Dec 3, 2013


My beloved country was farsighted in its derive to eliminate corruption by scaling up the salaries of ministers beyond the reach of any corrupting influence that the ministers and the Prime Ministers of Singapore are the highly paid cabinet in the world, a record worth admiring. It is admirable because of its boldness in articulating the obvious - that is the corruptibility of the ministers if they are not paid higher. This has been a very smart move in the sense that corruption has been legally institutionalised under the guise of drawing in to retaining talented people who will advance and realise the Singapore dream while tagging along those who have been deliberately marginalised by the viciously selective meritocracy. This does not mean there is no corruption in my country. It is well said that "power corrupts" but absolute power corrupts absolutely. When a country is well controlled with proper checks and balance, than corruption can be effectively concealed as the one who controls the country will be able to manipulate the corruption to his or her advantage and at the same time exonerate him from any blame. If any one attempts corruption he needs to be creative in such a way that he is either below the radar or above the radar of the state's watchdogs so that he will not make his presence known.

It is pleasing to read that some Malaysian states too trying to emulate the footprint of Singapore by raising the monthly salary of the state assemblymen, which is a bold statement of prosperity. But it would be better if these goodies are distributed across all levels of the society so that they too will benefit from such generosity. But then what is the point of raising the salary to be followed by raising the costs of the goods and services. It comes back to square one. Does this really solve the problem of corruption? In my opinion it will only raise the level of corruption to another notch.


Post Script:

I am pleased to read about the recent revelation of an anti-graft personnel involved in a purported misappropriation case. I look at him with great concern and he seems to be a decent man who is under the wrong spotlight. Perhaps he did not follow the instruction clearly or he may well be implementing what he has been ordered by his boss. This case sounds more like the Mat Selamat case who escaped limping with one leg from the toilet unnoticed by the security personnel. Wow, what a surprise and what a security lapse that he was not supervised. A luxurious rarity in Singapore where everything is closely monitored. They even monitor who yawns and who farts. How come this breach was not noticed. Something seriously wrong with the system. Was he charged because he was telling the truth? Sometime this happens because he may not be able to handle the truth he has. More to come.


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