“You don’t need to agree with the PAP, but discuss things openly, tell people the truth,” Mr Tharman added. “Always go for a better consensus. That’s how we advance democracy, that’s the track I hope SDP gets on to.”
Tharman had this advice for Chee; ‘discuss things openly, tell people the truth’. Wow! That was really rich coming from Tharman.
Before going further, let me say upfront that I, like many other Singaporeans, admire him tremendously for his command of financial matters and his common touch with the average Singaporeans. Which other PAP ministers, practically all of whom never got into parliament on their own steam but via a corrupted GRC system, can truly hold a candle to the many brilliant minds and leaders on the world stage? Just cast your mind across the faces of the past few cabinets, can we imagine anyone else being appointed Chair of the Int’l Monetary & Financial Committee? Or similar?
Singaporeans should not be too besotted with the GDP numbers since Goh Chok Tong (he who initiated his FT policy) took over as PM. From 1970 to 1990, the Soviet Union more than tripled their GDP before the USSR disintegrated. It’s easy, as Krugman observed, when all you needed to do is to ‘add labour’. Well, just because there is no evidence of cancer does not necessarily mean that everything is hunky-dory…or as I always like to say, ‘don’t say it won’t happen just because it hasn’t happened yet’.
‘Discuss things openly, tell the people the truth,’ he said. Chris Kuan has exposed Tharman’s less than open and truthful records from the financial angle. I’d like to add more observations, mainly related to our hard-earned CPF savings.
Discuss Openly & Tell The People The Truth
Can the Minister please discuss openly with us why Malaysia’s EPF, managed by lesser talents and paid much, much less than Singapore’s highly talented ones, has been able to beat Singapore’s CPF on dividend/interest paid to members?
Graph taken from https://likedatosocanmeh.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/20141028
If the Minister believes that Malaysia is 3rd World, then could he please consider to discuss openly with us Norway Global Pension Fund’s (GPF) average annual returns of 5.7% (in local currency) vs GIC’s & Temasek’s records?
While you are at it, Minster, please discuss openly with us, the people, why it is that the Norwegians pay only 0.06% of fund valuation (or only US$51mil for 2014, average 0.09% since 1998) in management fees to the managers to achieve such impressive returns whereas what we pay to the CEOs of GIC & Temasek are State Secrets, never once revealed to us Singaporeans whatsoever. Hello? Does not the CPF and Temasek’s fund belong to we- the-citizens? We are the Boss and the Boss doesn’t know, hasn’t the right to know how much we pay our employees?
For the record, GPF CEO, Mr Yngve Slyngstad, holds 4 Masters in Law, Economics, Biz Mgt & Political Science and, yes, had more than 10 years in investment and equity management prior to his CEO appointment 1 Jan 2008. He is supported by a team with impressive and role-relevant backgrounds. Click to discover the detailed information of each key executive. Compare that with our Singapore Technologies bloodline in Temasek…now becometh experts in fund management?
Minister Tharman, ‘discuss openly, tell us the truth’, can?
By the way, in case you don’t have the info, CEO Slyngstad earned NOK6,2417,170 in salary, NOK9,084 in benefits, NOK479.580 in pension benefit. An eye-boggling grand total of NOK6,735,834 (eye-boggling only in the 7-digit figure but worth only a ‘peanut’ S$1,202,828). Oh, by the way, he also has a co loan of NOK503,387 (S$89,890, I might have read somewhere that he loan that to renovate his house…Hilarious, isn’t it? Our top GIC & Temasek managers could probably buy one fully-furnished apartment each year instead of renovate a house! But we don’t know since it was never discussed openly, no info = no truth told.) Link to GPF Annual Report 2014, page 57.
So, please, ‘discuss openly and tell us the truth’ how much and why GIC & Temasek CEOs deserve the salaries & bonuses they have been getting.
It’s OK, take your time to ‘reflect…don’t blame the system’ for our ignorance – especially when it is in your hands and power to ‘discuss things openly, tell people the truth’. Unlike Chee, or us poor ignorant peasants, still without access to even basic information about how much we have been paying those we employ to manage our retirement funds with the majority ending up with insufficient to retire on – after 50 long, long years of nation building – you do have the info,.eh, or don’t you? And the authority and the same honesty you preached to Chee, I mean.
Perhaps, after you have discussed and told the truth to the above questions, we will have more of other stuff to talk about.
(By the way, Minister Tharman, I love both your and Mr Slyngstad’s hairstyles…. He more sexy one up on you, leh. He got sexy beard. Don’t angry. Joke only, lah.)
Law Kim Hwee
PS: For those interested to read more of the comparison between Norway’s GPF & our GIC & Temasek Holdings, check out this link.)