S’pore Inc:”Something this stupid generally requires teamwork”

In Corporate governance, GIC, S'pore Inc, Temasek on 01/12/2010 at 5:48 am

So said a senior American official, referring to a balls-up* in Afghanistan which showed the failure of British, US and Afghan intelligence.

“We have good growth; we have good plans and that is what we should be going into the election for – to mobilise people to support these plans and support the team which has brought this growth to them,” the PM said a few days ago.

But he forgot that there were two serious security goof-ups which proves twice over that “Something this stupid … requires teamwork”.

Mas Selamat climbed out of a detention centre, avoided capture despite taking refuge in his brother’s flat, and floated out of S’pore. Now anyone can do the first undetected, but the other two? And what odds all three consecutively? And if he can float out undetected, Pakis can float in, undetected, with explosives and illegal drugs.

And we had the SMRT depot break-in, that went undetected for days Given the threat of terrorism, S’poreans (and the authorities) were surprised that SMRT’s security was so lax. SMRT not an ordinary commercial company, it is also a GLC and TLC.

And then there were the PR damage limitation exercises that resulted from these incidents. They were so inept proving that “Something this stupid …  requires teamwork” comes. We had the CEO of SMRT (an FT from M’sia) blaming the public, and MPs being told by the Home Affairs minister that that Mas Selamat could go undetected in the flat “was not a security lapse’ and that hundreds were probed. What weed were they smoking? Or drug they were taking? Or what alcohol were they drinkng? Or what combination of these?

What about the other PR failure? Spinning why there were  several “one in a hundred year” freak floods within less than 12 months.

Then there was the Kiddie Games and the free bus rides for heartlanders to the Sentosa casino.

Finally there was the failure to take account of the housing and transport needs of the not unexpected sharp increase in population when putting out the “Welcome” sign to FTs.

“Something this stupid … requires teamwork” especially since most of the above happened in 2010.

But look on the bright side, PM. The PAP can use these goof-ups to advantage during the coming GE.

“OK we were cock-up kings this year but the reason was we were working hard this year to give civil servants and (not  ourselves) four months’ bonus.

‘But at least we got scholars in our team. Vote Opposition and you will get even worse balls-up. Only one “double first” among them and he talks like an ang moh. He goofed up a takeover, even though he was a hedgie before inheriting daddy’s political pary.

‘Would you want to go live-firing or grenade throwing with a two balls-up to his name academic? Or someone who sabos his central committee comrades?

‘Or someone who treats Potong Pasir as his personal property? His wife is standing there. We are not India, Pakistan or Sri lanka, where these things happen.

‘Vote for the incompetent team you know Vote PAP.

‘The other lot will be worse. Even if they are not, the civil service will fix them. Be afraid, very afraid if the Opposition gets in.”


*the president had been duped by an enterprising conman who had come to Kabul posing as a senior Taliban leader keen to engage in peace talks. Mr Karzai and his aides held clandestine talks with a man they believed to be the Taliban’s second-most-powerful leader. But their mullah, who at one stage was flown to Kabul on a NATO plane, was an impostor who pocketed the cash he was given. Economist article.


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