The position and allowance of a NCMP is nothing to envy about, for the work needed to be done

As a former Non-Constituency Member of Parliament, it feels kinda surreal to have a PAP politician ‘envy‘ the position and allowance of a NCMP.

Perhaps more information is needed about life on the other side in case one thinks the grass is greener there…

The allowance (about $2,000 monthly) is set at about 15% of a MP’s allowance. It is meant to cover expenses for parliamentary work, which a losing PAP candidate will not have to do. Parliament sits for 40-60 times a year. Usually, it is 1-3 times a month but during the Budget period, there will be about 2 continuous weeks of sittings commencing from around 11am till 7pm. When there are special bills or motions, there will be additional sittings, each of which can go on for several days.

My fellow NCMP colleagues and I, past and present, have taken pride to have good attendance and participation records. Usually, during the intensive budget sitting days, I absent myself nearly completely from my regular work as I make it a point to participate as much as I can in as many of the Committee of Supplies’ (i.e. various ministries) debates. There is also much to research on and we have to be resourceful as access to non-public information of the government is not available to us.

I do not believe the allowance for NCMP was designed by the PAP government to cover grassroots activities; hence NCMP gets 15% of a MP’s allowance. In addition, NCMPs do NOT get any access to facilities in the constituency he/she contested in previously, unlike that of losing PAP candidates.

I have continued my work on the ground even though I am no longer a NCMP, Many of my Party’s colleagues have continued their work on the ground. We do not get the support of the People’s Association, which gets some $1 billion annual allocation from the government’s budget for their work. PA will work only with PAP MPs and grassroots advisors appointed by the government, which include the losing candidates for the PAP in an opposition ward (But hey, it’s non-partisan, as someone famously said). Any expenses for our work, including food distribution projects for the needier families, have to be raised through our resourcefulness. Thankfully, there are Singaporeans and organisations willing to support, though some do come from our own pockets too. Work is organised by volunteers.

The Elections Department reports to the Prime Minister’s Office. It is fond of giving surprises to the opposition, with short notices for elections and sudden change of boundaries just before elections. Before GE2015, about 6 weeks’ notice was given. Many constituencies had changes, and that which I contested in previously was merged into something much larger. I am not sure what uncertainties PAP candidates have to deal with.

Sometimes it is better to count one’s blessings and then we will realise that there are actually much to be thankful for.

 

Yee Jenn Jong

* Comment first appeared on Mr Yee’s Facebook page.

 

 

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14 Responses to “The position and allowance of a NCMP is nothing to envy about, for the work needed to be done”

  • oxygen:

    SORE LOSER PAPpy IS A POLITICAL COCKROACH – his utterance spoke of dumbfarked ignorance – when one is passionately engaged in grassroot community effort – it needs the kind of commitment WITHOUT THE GRUDGE of not being rewarded.

    In public service – unlike private business enterprise – you do NOT invite yourself. The public either invites you or simply look past you.

    If unwilling of public judgment, just call it a day – IT WOULD BE BETTER FOR THAT COCKROACH AND FOR SOCIETY AS A WHOLE. There are some in the peasantry who does a LOT more for the nation, SILENTLY, WITHOUT A QUEST FOR ANY REWARD (financial or otherwise) and have been given without any expectation of return now or in forseeable future. To these patriotic minds and soul, their community-based efforts are intentionally ONE-SIDED GIFTS TO THE NATION.

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  • patriot of Temesak:

    Fake NEWS and the Fakeys will always be around…its the silly sheep that is NOT aware!!!

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  • HarderTruths:

    I know the majority of opposition candidates mean well – but let us be realistic – the NCMP means nothing in real terms except possibly give false hope to some that some grievances are being aired and action may follow.

    Forget it people. Forget about cheering your home team in parliament. This is not a football match. There is only one team that always wins and 99% of us are not in it.

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  • N.Jungne:

    Shame on you Victor Lie, much more shame on your party, the PAP.

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  • 手指指向五毂轮迴之所:

    同样的道理……

    部长,总理,总統的薪水也是没有什么好羡慕的,如果你知到他们必须做的工作,和所必须承受的压力,网络上的无理羞辱!

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  • ownself check ownself BS:

    N.Jungne:
    Shame on you Victor Lie, much more shame on your party, the PAP.

    he is not yet a pap politician because he is not yet voted into parleement.

    he is just a wannabe piece of sheet saliva foaming at mouth watering pap S$m.

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  • old man:

    He must be receiving funds from PA for his allowance. PA account is too big to monitor. Time to do a Malaysia boleh here too!

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  • Dead Horse:

    Hypocrisy at it’s best revealed!

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  • Sesame Street:

    YJJ, bravo to you and WP !!

    All those damn bloody lightning cocksters!

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  • LIONS:

    Fark the NCMP N NMP system.
    Do we need such FAKE MPs if we REMOVE GRC system n allow a level playing field for PAP MERITOCRATS to challenge like gentlemen n ladies with the OPPO SGS?

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  • consensus by manipulation:

    the allowance is to “buy” over the MP in the hopes he or she will joing the pap party for higher pay as full time elected MP>

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  • Dinners are just dinners:

    NCMP scheme is just yet another scheme to weaken the opposition.

    Other countries have fairer electoral systems (e.g. proportional representation or other methods) to ensure reasonable and proper representation of smaller parties in Parliament – and allowing them the same rights as all other MPs and allowance levels as other MPs.

    In Singapore, we only are made to swallow this nonsense NCMP scheme.

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  • Dinners are just dinners:

    Singapore should introduce political reform to a completely different political structure, something similar to proportional representation – perhaps either the German model or the Irish model.

    If one party wins 35% of the popular vote, it should in all fairness be entitled to 35% of seats in Parliament – that seems to be the most accurate way to reflect the will of the electorate.

    In the current first-past-the-post system, only the majority have their “will” reflected.

    While that is not entirely wrong according to simplistic democratic principles, a proportional representation type system would be fairer and better.

    Obviously with the new and fairer system, there would probably be no need for the NCMP system, but it might still be retained in case of some kind of freak result where one party gets more than 95% of the vote and 95% of the seats.

    Proportional representation or similar systems could be introduced for boards of companies, associations, clubs and societies. As more of these change to the new system, Parliamentarians will wake up and see the need for electoral reform and introduce a fairer system.

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  • oxygen:

    @ Dinners are just dinners.

    YES, REFORM IS URGENTLY NEEDED – our present political architecture and engineering is a DISASTROUS FAILURE – OUR ECONOMY RIGHT ON THE EDGE OF DISINTEGRATION COLLAPSE.

    Dinners are just dinners: Singapore should introduce political reform to a completely different political structure,

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