20 May 2012

Singapore People’s Party’s Declaration on the Abolition of the ISA
The Singapore People’s Party believes that the Internal Security Act (ISA) must be abolished. All men and women must be guaranteed the right to a fair trial. We believe that the ISA was misused in 1987 in Operation Spectrum, unless it is to be proven otherwise by an independent Commission of Inquiry. The current safeguards against the misuse of the ISA are still grossly insufficient. We note that in 1991, then Deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong had said that Singapore will seriously consider abolishing the ISA if Malaysia were to do so. As of September 2011, the Malaysian Government announced that it would do so. Terrorism-related activities should be addressed by laws drafted specifically for that purpose, where the element of armed violence must be thoroughly established. Singapore cannot become a true democracy with the continued existence of the ISA. The climate of fear in Singapore must be definitively ended, and the ISA is a key obstacle to this. Along these lines, we also believe that Singaporeans needs greater freedom of speech and expression, and we need a free press. Only then can Singaporeans be empowered to stand up and make a real difference to improve our society.

Chiam See Tong Secretary-General Singapore People’s Party

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