Monday, May 08, 2006

Gomez : Criminal Intimidation

I really don't wish to continue discussing politics so often, but I'm not feeling particularly creative recently, hence I'm blogging about this instead of other less-serious stuff.

I'm pretty sure everyone knows about the latest twist in the "Gomez Saga". Basically the police are investigating Gomez for "criminal intimidation". As I wrote in Pandemonium's blog, this response is somewhat expected. After all the fuss they made over the issue, it would be near impossible for them to back down suddenly.

If they backed down, it would mean that the issue wasn't that important after all, which would be like declaring "This issue is crap to distract you ". This is a lousy way to conclude the saga.

On the other hand, they could continue to pursue the issue. This would be consistent with their persistence that the issue was important. Although distasteful, this is probably the only acceptable path to take.

This lousy solution is the result of a poor gambit employed by the ruling party. Of course, when I say gambit, I don't mean that the issue is crap and isn't valid. It may well be true that Gomez planned all of it, but even so, the PAP could have reacted in other, milder ways. It was their specific choice to come down fast and hard rather than mild but firm. Their choice, so they have to follow through all the way.

In hindsight, I seriously think the PAP needs some power marketing. Perhaps they need some PR experts , say from the USA. If they could get Bush elected, I don't see why they can't improve the PAP's image.

As for the SDP, I think they're better of hiring lawyers than PR experts. :)


Jackson Tan said...

I'm no legal expert, but I perceive an unexpected twist in this case. It comes in the form of a lawsuit in Canada to judge the judicial system in Singapore.

Why is this a twist? Firstly, if the Canadian courts rule that Singapore courts are unjust, then it has severe consequences for Singapore globally. There will be both diplomatic and economic setbacks. There may also be public backlash within the country itself. Therefore, it is vital that Singapore courts are ruled as just and fair.

But I have little doubts that this Gomez case is put forth on flimsy and thorny grounds. If this case goes to court, and the ruling is in favour of the Elections Department/PAP, then it may affect the decision of the Canadian courts. And one of the main arguments put forth by the party making the charge is that the Singapore judicial system is an "utterly politicized component of executive rule".

Of course, that's assuming that this Gomez case goes to court. Chances are, it will, with accordance to PAP tradition. However, there is now external pressure to take into consideration.

I'm not sure how this will evolve. Perhaps I'm overreacting to the news. But it is worth pondering.

Anyway, it is worth mentioning that this appeal in the Canadian courts is probably coincidence. The company involved filed for appeal long before the elections, which means unless they have some eerie voodoo prediction powers, they would not have been able to guess the Gomez affair. (Actually, come to think of it, it is not so difficult...)

The Negative Man said...

The Canadian lawsuit seems pretty bull to me. Some of the accusations against the judicary are rather ludicrous. It seems to me that the company putting forward the case are either sore losers, or extremely convinced of their innocence.

In any case, I admit that the case reflects some very telling international opinions about Singapore's judicary. The very fact that some feel that the judicary is ridiculously unfair (as in WAY WAY unfair) is worth some thought.

Singapore politics are already known to be lopsided. It will be extremely sad if this smear on Singapore's reputation would spread and damage other areas of our reputation.

Who knows, maybe the next lawsuit would be a student suing for a first class honors because the singapore education system is "extremely politicized".