Singapore — After the lengthy debate in Parliament on Tuesday (Sept 14) on jobs and foreign worker policies, MP Chee Hong Tat, the Deputy Secretary-General of the National Trades Union Congress, wrote a Facebook post criticising NCMP Leong Mun Wai for making “baseless allegations against NTUC” as well as FTAs and CECA.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday (Sept 15), Mr Chee wrote that he’s glad that MPs, “including Nominated MPs and Opposition MPs from the Workers’ Party” rejected the motion filed by Progress Singapore Party’s Mr Leong, as well as agreed to “deplore attempts to spread misinformation about Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) like the Singapore-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA), stir up racism and xenophobia, and cause fear and anxiety amongst Singaporeans.”
He further noted that “it is disappointing that Mr Leong still insisted that Singaporeans’ job anxieties are caused by FTAs, in particular CECA,” despite prior clarifications from the government that the entry of work pass holders into Singapore is subject to proper controls.
Mr Chee also wrote that he has “spoken consistently on numerous occasions about the need for Singapore to remain open as this is directly linked to our survival and progress, and to our ability to grow the economy and generate good jobs for our people,” since he joined politics six years ago.
However, he added that it puzzles him that “Mr Leong made baseless allegations against NTUC in his closing speech, calling us the ‘weak link’ in the tripartite partnership and asking NTUC to do some soul-searching.
I wonder how much Mr Leong really know about NTUC and the hard work done by current and past generations of union leaders to improve the lives of our workers and help them to secure better jobs with higher pay?
Is he aware of NTUC’s important role in looking after our workers during economic crises to enable Singapore to overcome the challenges and emerge stronger? Is he familiar with what NTUC has done over the years to upskill our workers, raise their productivity and place them into good jobs?”
He later said that Mr Leong also made “baseless allegations” about FTAs and CECA despite not knowing “much” about them.
At the end of his post, Mr Chee warned against allowing “political opportunists to dilute our social cohesion and tear us apart. Staying together as one united people is important for us to move ahead.” /TISG
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