The ‘HDB’ propaganda war has begun?


So much continuing propaganda on the ‘HDB’ issue to gain or erode the public’s trust? 

Open the Sunday Times of 23 September, and you see glaring at you in the top right hand corner of the front page – “Cheaper, bigger, and better location – flats with ageing leases still have takers”.

There are altogether about 3.5 pages on HDB –

… “Old is gold for these buyers of ageing HDB flats

… “HDB upgrading programmes – Staying in good shape

The ‘HDB’ propaganda seems to to continue unabated, week after week. For example, in the last week:

… “HDB open to flexibility with LBS age requirement” (Straits Times, Sep 17)

… “Condo rents dip 0.1%; HDB rents rise 0.1%” (Straits Times, Sep 13)

… “Wider upgrading on horizon while Vers details are ironed out” (Straits Times, Sep 11)

… “Private developers may have role in redeveloping older flats” (Straits Times, Sep 11)

… “Nuggets of HDB town trivia at ST quiz site” (Straits Times, Sep 10)

… “Parliament: Private developers may have a role in redeveloping older flats for Vers, says Lawrence Wong” (Straits Times, Sep 10)

Now you know why our Press Freedom ranking is 151st in the world!

My friends said “aiyah, just look at the numbers stupid – just look at the onslaught no. of propaganda – if not a very very serious problem – no need so much propaganda lah – its so obvious!”

If all this is to gain the public’s trust, as highlighted in the online falsehood’s committee’s recommendations – then it may be somewhat overboard and overdone.

Perhaps the numbers that Singaporeans really need to see this issue from an objective perspective are:

… the Government should start to provide regular data on the price gap between older and newer HDB flat types in the different housing estates.

After all, isn’t this arguably, in the public interest, and in line with the online falsehoods’ committee’s recommendation that the Government should give the reasons for decisions not to disclose information to the public, and to gain the public’s trust?

Leong Sze Hian



About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.