Saturday, August 20, 2011

Moon Represent my heart - 4 languages

Tan Kin Lian sung this song in 4 languages (Chinese, English, Malay and Tamil) at a charity concert for the Singapore Chinese Orchestra. 

Moderate and independent

Mr Tan,

I read Yahoo about the forum held by TheOnlineCitizen. The sensitive topic of ISA was discussed and good that you kept your cool. I think you are picking up more supports by the day. Voters will be able to tell that you are moderate and more independent than the rest. TJS may garner strong supports online for the time being, but in the long run (the days ahead) things may turn to your favour. Keep your cool and focus in your programmes. So far, the rest are not composed in their agenda and so far nothing concrete from them. So, you are doing well and it takes time for voters to realise when comparisons are made each time a debate is held.

If you have the chance, do discuss about the pension of politicians. Retired politicians are enjoying their pensions. Does the "pension" scheme apply to those retired politician if they retired from Politics but took on other jobs (still active in employment)? The scheme is there for those who retired, then that sound logical. But, if the scheme is also enjoyed by those retired from politics but are working yet holding key positions, then is that logically fair? These are all tax payers money!

I am sure if you are elected as President, this is something you should look into. But for now, is there any of the Presidential Candidates who are enjoying such pensions while they are still actively employed? Well, bring it up in you debate and campaign and/or even rally. At least, you are not enjoying such pension. Cheers.


Silent majority

Dear Mr Tan

I know its going to be a tough fight ...
but please remember that there are many silent supporters rallying behind you ...
Singapore is sorely in need of a "independent" President with a "fighting" spirit...
Remember, you are the first to come up with the IDAC plan that forced a revolution in the car insurance industry ...
And with your many other accomplishments ...
Thus, it's no doubt you have the capability, foresight and hindsight to be a President ...

(By the way, I have also told all my relatives to vote for you)

Friday, August 19, 2011

How is Tan Kin Lian different from the other candidates?

In the Presidential election, you have the choice of four candidates. If you have not yet decided, I want to share with you the differences.

One candidate is closely connected with the Government and had been in a minister for more than 20 years. Do you want this person to be the President or do you prefer someone who is more independent of the Government?

Another candidate has stood as a candidate for an opposition party. He now wants to act as a check and balance on the government. Do you want the office of the President to be quarreling with the Government most of the time?

Another candidate was a non-executive chairman of a company and is not fully involved in the management. Do you want a President who does not have much financial experience to carry out the role of safeguarding the reserves?

If you want a candidate who can truly claim to be neutral and independent, give your support to me. I have never taken part in a general election under any political party. I can act independently of all political parties and not be obligated to the political interest.
I can represent the views of various segments of the people; especially if you want your problems solved using a non-partisan approach.

I also believe strongly in public service. I am standing for election to serve the people of Singapore and not for the high salary paid to the President. If elected, I will donate at least half of the salary to charity and other useful purposes.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Keep in touch with the people

Dear Mr. Tan
Few pointers for your consideration to reach out to the voters.

The minibonds crisis
The regulators and cabinet aware of what had happened. Nothing done to help the investors. You took the risks to help them. This is one clear example. The EP besides his constitutional role, can play major role in check and balances to ensure the people taken care of.

710000 people benefit. We know our Government is very efficient, moving forward Singaporeans need to know the breakdown. Benefitting 710000 people maybe garneing 7100000 voters to EP of choice. What happen to the sandwich class?

Transparency in the system
This requires mindset change in the government. They have shortcomings yes we agree but must act fast and not wait for 5 years why loose more seats than act on it like we see in the National Day Rally on Transport,sing, Education etc. EP will hear the voice of the people and if need be alert the PM to act on it rather than wait for next GE

Mr Tan, you need to let Singaporeans know besides your constitutional role, how you intend to play a active role to be in touch with the people and should they give feedback how you plan reply. Maybe the media could consider having a monthly column for the President.


Tan Kin Lian nomination day speech

Here is my speech in the four official languages of Singapore

Deferment of national service - tertiary education

Mr. Tan,
Please share your views about deferment of national service for male citizens to complete their tertiary education. The ministry of defense reject most request for deferment but grant them to only special situations - in one specific case for 12 years. Should deferment be allowed more generally, so that the educational prospects of our male citizens are not hampered?

This issue needs to be studied. We have to consider the needs of National Service and also the needs of the male citizens. With a proper study, and getting the inputs of the relevant parties, i.e. Mindef, parents, young males - we can find a better solution.

Regardless of the outcome, it is important that the policy should be implemented fairly. Nobody should be given special favor - otherwise, the people will lose trust in the government and their leaders.

Straits Times Presidential Rountable

Tan kin Lian interview with TheOnlineCitizen

National Service

Mr. Tan
Are you proposing that girls and non-citizens should do national service?

My preference is for our male citizens to be given a higher allowance for their full time National Service, similar to the salary that is paid to a full time soldier. Part of this increase in allowance can be contributed to their CPF account.

Another alternative is to give a higher housing grant to a person who has completed full time National Service. This can be an amount that compensates them adequately for the two years of time that is spent in National Service, and also for the disadvantage in starting work later. An amount of $30,000 may be suitable.

There is already an existing scheme where the Governments provide a housing grant for first time applicants to buy a flat. This housing grant should be given differentiated between those who have or have not served National Service.

We can also give girls and permanent residents a similar opportunity to serve full time National Service in non-combat jobs, e.g. nursing, administrative work and community service.  They can also enjoy the same privilege as given to male citizens. We should turn National Service from being a burden to a privilege.

This is just my idea. If there is a President Personal Council, the people can submit their other views to be evaluated. A panel of impartial people can vote on the various suggestions and choose those that have the widest support.

Tan Kin Lian

Donating half of the salary

Dear Mr. Tan,

Good to highlight in your campaign that contributing part of the President's salary is a way to acknowledge (1) the overly high salary for President and not vote buying, (2) as a form of public service where there is no need for such high salary, (3) to help those needy who are left behind by the economic development and growth chasing approach in Spore.

Perhaps, you may be able to propose plans/ programmes on how to help those who are falling behind the economic race (or the less privilege).

Wet market and MRT stations, Bus interchange and Shopping complexes, are some good points of contact for campaigning.

Foreigners who are taking up citizenship should be required to serve National Service, both men and women. Men serve in the Armed Forces on the normal duration as Sporeans while women serve as nurses for a shorter period. That would take care of our shortage of nurses in Structured Hospitals, hence, there is no need to hire so many foreigners as nurses. That applies to foreigners and if proved to be successful, then you could extend to local Singaporeans (women) to serve NS as nurses and that will close the gap of women climbing faster at work (at least 2 to 2.5 yrs advantage) and ahead of men with mandatory NS.

Serving as NS nurses for foreigners is an excellent approach to address the current hot topic in Singapore. I am sure many Singaporeans will agree with you on that. But, may not be wise to include the local Singaporean women at this juncture as you may lose votes instead. So just focus your policy on the foreigners who want to take up citizenship.

Keep in touch, cheers.

Voice of the People - adequate pension

Dear Mr. Tan
You said you will be the voice of the people. Can you be the voice of the old Singapore Harbour board/PSA PENSIONERS? Port Pensioners with low pension who retired many, many years and who had been receiving the "SINGAPORE ALLOWANCE" are now not receiving the yearly top up of $20/- for the last 5-6 years.

Government Pensioners who are receiving the "SINGAPORE ALLOWANCE" on the other hand have their pension topped up by $20/- yearly without fail. Payment of this allowance is one Government policy that should be the same and equal and fair to both the SHB/PSA Pensioners and the Government Pensioners.

All of us living in Singapore have the same cost of living, paying the same taxes, GST, transport cost, etc. Govenment Pensioners are also enjoying Medical Benefits but not the SHB/PSA Pensioners. Why one policy with two different rules?

Why this unfairness? Why this discrimination? Could you obtain this top- up of $20/- for the Port Pensioners? Can you voice out this to the Government and fight for the SHB/PSA Pensioners?

I am sure they and their families will support you in your coming President Election. GOOD LUCK AND GOD BLESS YOU.

I will use the same approach shown in this reply:

President Personal Council - Voice of the People

Dearest Mr Tan K.L.,
I hereby would like to hear from your views on singaporean citizens with mental disabilities e.g. agoraphobia.

How will you voice out in the parliament for this batch of citizens? Will there be assurance of subsidies on medication / additional welfare?
Or assistance provided to help those who can eventually contribute to the society in simple jobs assignments & meantime earn a small amount of salary for survival?
Or charity organised for this particular batch of mental disabilities? etc.

I will be the voice of the people and raise issues that are of concern to large numbers of people.

For issues of this type, there are special interest group comprising of people who are directly affected and who knows about the issues and the types of assistance that should be provided. These groups can present their views to the President Personal Council.

The Council will study and evaluate the proposal and seek clarification, if necessary, from the advocates. It will put the proposals to be voted vote among a panel of impartial people.

Among all the issues that are considered by the Council, the top one or two issues that has the highest score will receive the attention of the President. The President will study the recommendation of the Council and select the issues to be raised with the relevant minister.

Tan Kin Lian

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Response to PM Lee's views on the Presidential election

 I would also like to take this opportunity  to thank  Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong for his insightful statement that the Government will work with whoever's elected. I am also encouraged by his remarks that the new head of state will be above politics and enjoy the respect of citizens. 

I will bring my personal values of honesty, fairness, courage, positive thinking and public service to the office of the President. I have always been on record that I am neither pro-PAP nor pro-Opposition. I am pro-People of Singapore. 

I will be the Voice of the People but I am non-partisan and I am above politics. Unlike the other candidates, I have never participated in a general election under a banner of a political party!

Tan Kin Lian

Straits Times Roundtable - Burden of National Service

At the Straits Times Roundtable held on 16 August, I posed this question, "Dr. Tony Tan, we all know that national defence is important for our country. But, when you were Minister for Defence, were you aware about the  national service placed an unfair burden on our male citizens. They have to serve national service and faced difficulty in competing with foreigners and girls for jobs as they start two years later. They also have to be disrupted regularly for reservist duty. What could you have done before or what would you do today, to reduce this burden?".

Dr. Tony Tan replied at length about the importance of national service to our country but did not address the question about the unfair burden being shouldered only by the male citizens. I wanted to follow up on this matter, but the moderator replied that time has run out and he closed the discussion.

There are many measures that can be taken, if the Government recognizes the unfair burden. They could pay the NS men an adequate salary, rather than a small allowance, or can contribute towards their CPF savings for the full time national service. They could give a bigger housing grant to NS men for the purchase of HDB flat (rather than offer the grant to eligible people, regardless of whether they had served national service).

I written on this matter for the past 25 years. I will continue to bring up this issue, until the unfairness of this system is addressed and the burden is more fairly spread among the males, females, citizens and non-citizens.

Tan Kin Lian

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Take care of the elderly

Dear Mr Tan
Perhaps there is space in your blog to help display my recent contribution to the Yahoo forum.

International Longevity Centre survey (ST Aug 14) confirms older folks aged 60 do not have sufficient CPF upon retirement (only 5% male can rely on his CPF, 1% female can rely on her CPF). 
Feedback in past years to high ranking ministers concerning the plights of our retirees struggling with the measly CPF retirement payout all fallen on deaf ears. 

Our retirees love Sg, each having toiled 40-50 years continuously helped to transform Sg from 3rd world to 1st world country. Our retirees personify the true Spirit of Singapore: they are brave people, having toiled so

hard to raise the younger generation who now continues to contribute to our Nation's growth.

Our Govt told the world, that in wealthy Singapore, there is no lack of money for worthy cause. We allocated multi-billion dollars for estates renewal, multi-$billions to help neighbouring states, multi-$millions for mega showcase events, multi-$billions to help the lower-income with wage supplements, to own their flats, multi-$millions to help the bottom rung 10% elderly sick. Our accumulated wealth is largely the contribution from the toil and hard work of our 80% healthier elderly folks.

Certainly, it is NOT a welfare handout to help this cohort who live in fear of financial insecurity, social oblivion long being forgotten. A tiny token of state monthly-supplement can sooth the souls.

Many of our top earner elites are enjoying comfortable Govt life pension. Our elderly folks rightly deserve a fair share of our Nation's wealth redistribution. We can consider setting up a Hard-work-Ethos Endowment Trust (in order to help overcome the unfounded and fixated paranoid about exhausting our reserves).

For past 4-5 decades of hardwork, the retiree rightly deserve a token monthly-supplement to enable her/him cope with stress and anxiety so as to lead a dignified life during her/his last 5-15 remaining years continuing with their "I love Sg" spirit (a national unifying force).

This culture of caring, will also spur younger Singaporeans to return from abroad to contribute to our economy with lesser worry for their own old age needs.

Health subsidies

Mr Tan
I am glad that you are standing for the PE.  You will definitely get support as well as from my friends and relatives.   I hope you will consider posting the following in your BLOG.
Health Subsidies extended to 710,000 - MOH REPORT
Based on the above announcement, the figures looks impressive.  In reality how many will qualify earning household income of less than $1500.   With this household income, can a family survive with children and elderly.   This is one area the EP could ask the Minister of detailed breakdown of how the figures are derived and why the 'sandwiched class' are not taken care of.  

Sometimes staff in civil service wants to look good and impressed the Minister with figures which could be inaccurate.   Imagine a family with household income of eg $5,000 having a domestic helper and need to care for elderly.   Is it enough?  They do not even qualify for medifund etc.   Maybe MOH reluctant to work with CPF and MCYS as caring for elderly involves tri-pitate parties.  

The EP could ask the Minister how he plan to take care current elderly who incurred $500 or more expenses rather than impleent year or later.  Such costs should be deductible from Medisave for the elderly.  In this current climate, our EP need participative rather than a figure head.   Look in the past 5 years, if the EP have highlighted the housing, trasnsport, medical concern to the ruling government, we need not be 'fire fighting' right now.  All this is due to complacency in the system
Mr Tan, if you are elected I hope you will still be in touch with the people as you are the people's voice.

Spread this message - My Vision for Singapore

To my blog readers and supporters.
Please help me by sending the following message to all your friends and contacts.

My Fellow Singaporeans
I wish to share my vision for Singapore.
Please watch this 8 minute video.
If you like it, please send it to all your friends and contacts. 

Support Tan Kin Lian as President

Dear Mr Tan

You impressed me as I follow your blog about insurance and investments for years already and I sense your sincerity in helping fellow Singaporeans. NTUC Income under you made insurance affordable to many and Income customers came first before profits. 

I know Singapore under you as President would be the same, you would also treat us your fellow Singaporeans with respect and consideration. And when I read this blog, it also made more sense to me that you are political independent and that is even more important for the president to be one. I will support you Mr Tan! You have my vote!
Good luck. You are not alone in the race. I and many friends are behind you!

Straight Talk with Tan Kin Lian

Straight Talk with Mr Tan Kin Lian will be broadcasted “live” at on the following dates and time. Viewers are also invited to provide feedback and ask questions during the “live” broadcast at the comfort of their own home to learn more about Mr Tan Kin Lian, one of the four candidates for the President of Singapore.

Straight Talk with TKL: Voice of the People
Date: 19 August (Friday)
Time: 9.00pm – 9.45pm
Mr Tan Kin Lian will be sharing with the audience why it is important for the President of Singapore to be the Voice of The People and how he will carry out this role when elected. Viewers are invited to ask Mr Tan Kin Lian questions via the chat channel, email at, twitter with hashtag #tkl2011, Facebook at, or sms at 81685845.

Straight Talk with TKL: Independence from the PAP
Date: 20 August (Saturday)
Time: 9.00pm – 9.45pm

Mr Tan Kin Lian has announced that his campaign will adopt a neutral and non-partisan approach. Learn from Mr Tan Kin Lian how he will take this same approach in making his decisions as President of Singapore. Viewers are invited to ask Mr Tan Kin Lian questions via the chat channel, email at, twitter with hashtag #tkl2011, Facebook at, or sms at 81685845.

Straight Talk with TKL: Your CPF Savings
Date: 21 August (Sunday)
Time: 9.00pm – 9.45pm
The President of Singapore holds the second key to safeguard Singapore’s reserves. Learn from Mr Tan Kin Lian how he will safeguard your reserves when elected. Viewers are invited to ask Mr Tan Kin Lian questions via the chat channel, email at, twitter with hashtag #tkl2011, via Facebook at, or sms at 81685845.

Monday, August 15, 2011

PAP of the old days

Mr Tan,
I am 64 yrs old and like you supported PAP policies in the 70s, 80s. Just because of your previous PAP membership, those who do not know your background well enough just simply lump you as also one of the ex-pap people and even one of the candidate like to harp on this fact to show that he has never been associated with the PAP.

So in your campaign, you need to somehow HIGHLIGHT that most S'poreans were supporters of PAP in the early decades because they were looking after Singaporeans. But like most of them we have become disillusioned with their (PAP) policies and MOVED away from them.

There are even a lot of ill informed public who simply link the name NTUC as asssociated to the PAP camp and that include NTUC Income where you helmed.

This is just my feedback to you. I benefitted from my various policies when you were Income CEO and when you left, I stopped all of them except my Annuity Plan.


Election symbol for Tan Kin Lian: Hi-5

I have already submitted the following logo to the Elections Dept for approval. I will only be informed of their decision only after nominations are closed.

The symbol Briefly my logo shows a hand raised to signify willingness to do public service. The five fingers also signify my  five values: Honesty, Fairness, Positive Attitude, Courage and Public Service. 

The hand is inside a speech box which represents my slogan to be the Voice of the People. This symbol is also called Hi-5.

Donation to TKL Campaign

If you wish to donate to my campaign, you can register at (click on "Donate"). You have to provide your name and NRIC. Instructions on payment are shown there.

You can also write a cheque in the name of "Tan Kin Lian" and send it to 24 Sin Ming Lane #02-107, Singapore 573 970.  Please include your name, NRIC and address. Thank you for your support.

Political neutrality is important

Good day Mr Tan,

I am a retiree and I have been following the Presidential Election closely.I am Chinese educated, so my English is very bad, please bear with me. 

I follow your internet website news updates daily and I can feel your earnest sincerity to represent us,the common Singaporeans.

There is a debate going on about the candidates’ political affiliations.Political neutrality is very important. We have candidates from PAP and SDP but you are truly neutral and untainted with the dirtiness of political agenda,and you have served NTUC Income with dedication for 30 years!So many Singaporeans benefited.We Chinese value loyalty and dedication.I do not understand why people on the internet did not give you the credits you fully deserve.As the Chinese saying goes 没有功劳,也有苦劳!

I remember how you fought bravely for us commoners during the minibonds saga.Nobody, but Mr Tan Kin Lian voiced out and fought for us! Despite the tides are against the minibond investors,you fought for the minibond investors and campaigned against the PAP’s bank!You have nothing to gain, but much to lose. We Singaporeans know you work behind the scenes to fight for us!You are also the 1st who openly promised to donate part of your pay to charity.

We Singaporeans need a People’s President, someone who knows the ground, speak the language; know the difficulties which we face, filled with compassion,and someone who dares to voice up for the people! You have exhibited that!You are the choice!I am proud that you are contesting for Presidency.You have my vote and my wife’s vote.

Carry on the fight!You are our voice.Singaporeans need you!We want to see you at the next National Day! I have knee problems and travelling is difficult for me,but I can contribute financially to your campaign. Please let me know how to.


Bad investments in land plots

An elderly man came to my office to give me his feedback. He invested over $200,000 in land under Profitable Plots and lost it entirely. He was angry that the Government allowed this type of company to set up in Singapore. His health deteriorated badly. He now have to work two shifts as a security guard to make a living. He almost cried.

I felt so sad, as there is nothing that I can do for him. Many other people are also affected in various types of bad investments that are allowed to be sold in Singapore. I am so tied up with the preparations for the campaign that I could not spend time to hear him out. Anyway, there must be several thousand people with problems like his.

I hope that many people will vote for me in the Presidential election, so that I may be able to do something to put right these types of abuses and injustice in Singapore.

Tan Kin Lian

Tan Kin Lian on Wikipedia

Tan Kin Lian and High-5

Presidential Election 2011 - Calling for supporters for TKL campaign

Dear Supporter and readers of my Blog

The election is here. I need your support for the groundwork of your campaign. I need helpers to go round with me in a bus to MRT stations and markets to hand out flyers. If you can take leave during the next 10 days (or some of the days) after nomination day, please volunteer and tell Edward Lim (email:. edward You can also register at (click on Supporter).

This is the chance for you to be actively involved in my campaign. If you have benefited from my work in the past, here is the chance for you to show your appreciation. Please come forward now, as I need all the help that I can get.

I also need donations to meet the expenses of the campaign. Please donate at (click on Donate).

Thank you.
Tan Kin Lian

Message for supporters

To my blog readers and supporters
Please copy the message below into an e-mail and send it to all your friends and contacts. Help me to spread the message to as many people as possible. I need your help.


Dear friend,


I will be standing for election as President to 

  • be a voice of the people
  • be independent of the PAP Government and
  • safeguard your CPF money and Singapore’s Reserves
Guiding me are my personal values of honesty, fairness, positive attitude, courage and public service and by your views, which I will actively seek.

I wish to run for President as a public duty. I don’t wish to receive a large salary and will donate at least half of the salary to charity and other worthy causes.

I hope that you will give me your support and together we can build a better future for all Singaporeans.

Yours sincerely,

Tan Kin Lian

Please send this e-mail to all your friends and tell them to forward to their friends. 

My vision for the future:
National Day message in 4 languages (
Campaign website:

National Day Rally Speech by PM Lee

I watched the National Day Rally speech by PM Lee over television as I was not able to get an invitation to the Rally.

PM Lee started with the challenges that Singapore has to face in the near future due to the debt crisis and possible economic slowdown in America and Europe. While we have to be prepared for the worst, I share his confidence that Singapore has the resilience to overcome these challenges. If the past reserves need to be tapped to meet the crisis, I ask the Government to adopt measures that will help the people directly in addition to the measures to help businesses.

I am encouraged by two key thrusts in his speech:
  • He identified the important issues faced by the people, i.e.  housing, jobs, education and health care and has proposed some measures to address them
  • He reiterated his commitment towards a more open and consultative approach and welcomed the inputs from the people.
I recalled that some of these points were mentioned by PM Lee in the past years. It seemed that we had made only small progress in these thrusts and, in some areas, the situation appeared to have worsened. There must be some structural issues and obstacles in getting the inputs of the people.  

I have personal experience of sending suggestions to several ministries on public transport, work issues and red tape and, apart from receiving a polite acknowledgement, there was no further development. 

I agree with PM Lee that the government can benefit from the inputs of citizens who have put in much passion and effort to think through the issues and provided some possible solutions. We need a new approach towards listening and using these inputs.  I hope that PM Lee will address the root cause of the challenges faced by his civil servants and ministers in working in the new environment.

I am contesting the Presidential election on the promise to be "the Voice of the People". If I am elected, I will be able to help the Government in the process of reforming our policies, using a more open, transparent and consulting approach.

I like to send best wishes to the PM Lee and his Government in dealing with these issues and will be interested to help the Government to find better solutions in the future, in whatever capacity I may be in.

Tan Kin Lian

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Watershed Presidential Election

Climate of fear
Before the GE 2011 May 7th, the fear of voting against the establishment is there and it's very real. People has been wondering the secrecy of the vote; how their vote will affect their job or businesses with or in the public service; families have been wary of casting the opposite vote because of their family members who are working in the public sector.
When the GE 2011 is over, I feel suddenly the climate of fear has been reduced by a lot and people has been very vocal in their opinion of this government. It seems suddenly people are starting to understand voting is not that scary after all and the importance of that one vote. 
Maybe the fear has already reached the end of its affair and it will only take GE 2011 to reaffirm that preposition.

My vision for Singapore - Tan Kin Lian

Visually handicapped singing a song


Quote from CNA website:

(Mr. Tan Kin Lian) also appealed to Singaporeans to be non-partisan when they head to the polls.

He said: "Most of the people are looking at whether you're in the PAP camp or in the opposition camp. But my platform is to be above politics, because I'm appealing to all Singaporeans - regardless of which political party you're (affiliated to) - to think about the future for Singapore."

Donate at least half of President's salary

Dear Mr. Tan,
I respect you for stating at the start of the campaign that you will be donating at least half of the President's salary towards charity and other worthy causes. You stated in clearly in statements to the media and in  you campaign website. Recently, you challenged the other candidates to state their stand on this issue.

Tan Jee Say said that he will donate the "bulk of his salary" but this statement is not clearly stated as part of his manifesto. It is only mentioned in the media interview. I hope that he will follow soon with a clear statement in writing and explain what is "the bulk".

Dr. Tan Cheng Bock had said that he will not make any pledge as it is akin to "buying votes". You can read the views of netizens on this matter here:

And, we have not heard from Dr. Tony Tan. He is so rich that he can donate all of the salary. After all, he is getting a fat pension.

Thank you, Mr. Tan KL, for setting a good example. I hope that you will win the election and your example will be emulated by all the ministers, who are also getting get high salaries. 


Approaching unions for endorsements

At the Tiong Bahru market this morning, I met many people who recognized me. One man told me that he was a victim of the Lehman mini-bond but managed to recover 70% of his investment. He thanked me for my efforts. A few people recognized me as they were policyholders of NTUC Income. Some told me that they were vote for me, because I was willing to "speak out for the people". Another said that he supported me because I was the only candidate that is "neutral", i.e. not leaning towards the PAP or the opposition.

It was a great experience to interact with many Singaporeans who reacted warmly to me. During the last 35 years, I have made many friends and they are now coming forward to give me their support. I hope that this support will be reflected in the voting on 27 August.

The journalists asked for my views about the endorsements by several unions for Dr. Tony Tan. I replied that I would welcome endorsements from unions and cooperative societies, but I would not approach them as I do not wish to put them in a difficult position in having to decide on endorsing or declining a candidate that is not supported by the government.  I prefer to be endorsed by the ordinary people, who will be casting their votes in the Presidential election.

Tan Kin Lian

Remembering President Ong Teng Cheong

Mr. Ong Teng Cheong was the Secretary General of NTUC from 1983 to 1993. During this time, I got to know him, but not very well, as I was heading a NTUC cooperative.

In the early 1990s, Mr. Ong promoted the orchid motif as the symbol of the Singapore Dress. It was intended to be the national dress from Singapore, similar to the batik and barong talog used in our neighboring countries.

NTUC Income produced a set of ties in different colors using the orchid motif and presented them to Mr. Ong  on his departure from NTUC to contest the Presidential election in 1993. Mr. Ong chose the red orchid motif for his campaign and subsequently for his official photograph as President. I called it the "President's tie" and presented a tie to all Members of Parliament in 1993. Mr. Ong also used the other colors for other occasions.

President Ong was the founding patron of the Singapore Dance Theater. He asked the NTUC cooperatives to support the SDT  in promoting dance in Singapore. I promoted the SDT performances to the policyholders of NTUC Income and later joined the board of directors, where I served for 12 years.

President Ong was also the patron of the First Singapore Mount Everest Expedition which saw the successful ascent of the first Singapore to the highest peak in the world. NTUC Income was one of the main sponsors of this expedition.

I had the opportunity to know President Ong as a friend during this team as President where he asked for my help in the causes that he promoted. During the last two years of his term, I chaired the President's Charity event to raise funds for charity and to promote the Singapore Dress.

His wife was quite sick but she made a special effort to attend the second charity dinner. She passed away shortly afterwards. I organised 1,000 messages of condolences from Singaporeans, submitted through the internet, and presented the book to President Ong.

President Ong was a man of great talents - in understanding culture and the arts and in connecting with the people. He was willing to speak up for what he believed to be right, and carried out several bold initiatives that left their mark in Singapore.

Tan Kin Lian

Leadership renewal

Dear Mr Tan
Perhaps you may wish to incorporate the following yahoo forum posting in your blog.

The original spirit is for the EP to check on potential renegate ruling party. The effective EP should logically be a non-PAP minister/MP for proper check and balance.

Presidential election is for the people to decide.

Why did the elite "leadership" of unions and establishments so selfishly take side ? It must be for obvious reasons ie. to enjoy holding senior positions continuously 20-35 years ignoring the need for leadership renewal.

For the sake of Singapore's future, establishment-endorsed TT should graciously withdraw. Failing which, hope 2 out of the 3 other candidates will pull out.

This will help forge a Unifying Force (1-for-3 approach). The more focused voters will then be able go full steam help the Unifying Force garner a decisive 55-60% vote count, leaving TT with just 40% vote count.


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