Sunday, 11 May 2008

Keeping in Touch

Lonely Speakers CornerWe get regular yellow A5 flyers from the local political organisation. The ruling party (PAP) has an extensive grassroots presence as a bi-directional link to understand and influence opinion. I'm not against it in any way and I'm pretty sure Singaporeans have greater access to their MP and their local party organisation than I would in England.

Singaporean society is a pyramid with a lot of lowly-paid, working class people at the bottom and ensuring their needs are met is a constant political priority. Tax breaks, freebies, allowances, HDB upgrades, more buses; there are lots of options.

Here's a flyer from a few months back:

Nee Soon South Citizen's Consultative Committee

Free distribution

Vegetables every Friday at Block 718

Bread every Wednesday at Block 783, 804 & 832

Dried food every month at Block 783, 804 & 832

This project will be especially helpful to our needy residents, especially in the run-up to Chinese New Year.

We have drawn up a list of residents who qualify for this free food scheme. Please let me know of anyone else who should also be added to this list so that we can reach out to them.

MP Er Lee Bee Wah

It's a level of direct political touchy-feely that not even local councils achieve in England where instead, perhaps, non-political charities would be taking such roles. Singapore is smaller, sure, but a 49year continuity of ruling party must be a significant factor in such a pervasive, grass-root organisation.