Future-focused framing of pandemic crisis requires clarity of desired end state and willingness to take risks

Year: 2020

This post is written as a brief comment to the ministerial statement delivered by Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on 5 October 2020.

“FMG thanks DPM Heng for his upbeat future-focused framing of the crisis. We also acknowledge that the emphasis on promoting technological adoption and reactivating our aviation hub are right and necessary choices.

However, we note that the Ministerial statement can be divided into 3 sections.

The first, strategies for recovery. These are at the 50,000 feet level and lack details.

The second, a laundry list of a myriad of channels to flush monies into businesses, households and workers without it being clear on what this ultimately serves, whether it is will calibrated, scrutinised or merely represent a license to spend to create the sensation of normalcy.

Third, a slew of motherhood, albeit well intended, statements.

Singapore does not need a ‘Churchill’ to ‘mobilise the English language and send it to war’.

It needs a Churchill or LKY, with a strategic view, clarity of desired end state, conviction, willingness to take risks and to accept realities and most crucially, the gumption to sack failures and replace them till the right leaders are found and then back them.

Regrettably we do not see any evidence of this in the Ministerial statement.

Nevertheless, we thank DPM Heng and his team for their undisputed care, concern and commitment to Singaporeans and Singapore.”

– Devadas Krishnadas