Is the Singapore media lacking independence and a political tool of the PAP, as Low Thia Khiang has claimed? You bet!
How else can one explain the complete lack of coverage for ‘That We May Dream Again‘, held on 2 June at Speakers Corner?
By all accounts it was an extremely well-organized event, with stalls, exhibitions, life-sized replicas of the cells of ISA detainees, photographs, books and other memorabilia. The event included moving speeches by civil society activists, well-known politicians, ex-detainees, and even performances by local indie musicians.
One wonders why such a well-organized event to commemorate one of the darkest events in Singapore’s post-independence history had a complete news blackout in the local mainstream media.
There was zero coverage in print, radio, TV and Internet. Zilch, nada, zip.
In any other country, there would be op-eds examining and re-examining history. There would be features looking backat the events. The surviving detainees would be interviewed. There would be questions asked of the Govt. There would be op-eds for and against the Govt’s action. And such a well-organised commemorative event would be well-covered, front page news even.
What we had was a deafening silence.
If that is not evidence of the media as a political tool of the PAP, of a media lacking independence and being afraid to question the Govt, I don’t know what is.
Media control is not about the petty little pieces the papers put out on WP’s leadership issues or their unflattering pictures of Png. When the PAP uses the media as a political tool, we get complete news blackouts, a total lack of questioning, straight unedited Govt press releases published as “news”, and suppression of coverage of certain political parties and individuals.
That is what Mr Low missed.