Posts Tagged ‘Nominated Members of Parliament’

NMP Selection Criteria

In Political governance on 08/12/2011 at 6:13 pm

Nominations for NMPs closed earlier this evening.

As there is always an NTUC NMP, I hope NTUC asked, its nominee, Ms Mary Liew Kiah Eng, Executive Secretary and Deputy Executive Director of the Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union, this question, “Are you willing to talk more in Parliament than comrade Terry Lee?”, and her reply was “Yes”. For the record, Terry Lee, a unionist and a NMP in the last parly, was the “King Skiver” when it came to speaking in parly. He made 10 speeches in 20 months (an average of once every two months) or S$4,000 a speech.

And, I hope, the committee in parly selecting the NMPs will ask all nominees, “Do you plan to beat Jos Yeo’s “tuang” record?” She spoke seven times in 20 months (an average of once every 2.9 months), earning S$5,700 a speech.

Nice work if you can get it.  Remember the cliche, “Talk is cheap”? Err when it comes to Jos and Terry, talk ain’t cheap. They cost the taxpayer serious money.

Seriously, nominees should not waste taxpayers money  if they have no interest in being NMPs except to collect their monthly allowance. NMPs are there to raise issues and provide views. This can only be done by opening their mouths and talking sense like Siow Kum Hong, who when NMP outperformed the WP’s Low and Sylvia. Silence is not an option. MPs who don’t talk much or raise issues in parly can always fall back on the reasonable excuse that they prefer to focus more on serving the needs of the people in their words. NMPs don’t have this excuse.

It’s all about dignity, the dignity of the position of NMP, and personal dignity.

Related posting:

Best NMPs: Jos Yeo and Terry Lee?

In Political governance on 10/11/2011 at 1:25 pm

Among the outgoing Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs), sociologist Paulin Straughan spoke 75 times, the most. Former national swimmer Joscelin Yeo spoke seven times. Unionist Terry Lee spoke 10 times. The nine NMPs spoke a total of 247 times, a simple average of about 27 times each. The median number of speeches was 24. (Median is the middle value of the given numbers or distribution for those bad at maths.)

As NMPs get a monthly allowance of about S$2,000, you could have concluded that Jos and Terry were the tuang queen and king among the NMPs, skiving while collecting S$2,000 monthly. Assuming they were paid for 20 months, they would have been paid S$40,000 each. This works out to more than S$5,700 per speech in Jos’s case and S$4,000 in unionist Terry’s case.

Or were the salaries “peanuts”, so that they didn’t bother to open their mouths more often?

Well, there is actually a S’porean who implies that they did the right thing, by skiving.  This was published in Today’s Voices as follows:

NMPs reduce the time for elected MPs to debate issues
Letter from Anton L S Chan
HOW effective were the Nominated Members of Parliament (Nov 9)? My answer is, they were neither effective, necessary nor required. Parliament is a place for elected Members of Parliament to contribute and debate on every Bill. This is a necessary role of our elected MPs, People’s Action Party or Opposition. It is required from them to be seen and heard by the constituents. It will be effective because elected MPs are the voice of the people. Why do we need NMPs to speak for us? It also does not make sense that NMPs can effectively represent Opposition voices. The allowance of S$2,000 a month is a waste of taxpayer money. Professor Paulin Straughan spoke 75 times – the highest among her peers. We do not need the professor to speak for us. We need and want our own elected MPs to do the job, to discuss and debate on the Bill that affects the people of Singapore. On the contrary, NMPs who speak in Parliament reduce the time for elected MPs to speak and contribute to the debate.If the NMPs are so passionate and capable of speaking for the people of Singapore, they should take the step and contest the General Election. Otherwise let the elected MPs be heard and seen by the people of Singapore. The time in Parliament allocated to the NMPs should be given to the Non-Constituency MPs. At least they still represent the voice of their constituents.

 OK, I exaggerated his support of Jos and Terry.
Me? Jos and Terry should be ashamed they took tax-payers’ money and gave so little in return. Emulating some ministers and PAP MPs? Hoping to become PAP MPs is it?
Actually Jos ain’t that bad. Unlike Terry, who is a unionist (unionists are supposed to be dedicated to serving the workers), she is juz one of us ordinary S’poreans, albeit one who won medals for S’pore, at a time when winning such medals didn’t do much for her finances. So maybe she thinks it was payback time when she became NMP?