‘Right and proper’ for WP Town Councillors to recuse themselves from financial matters

06 Nov 2019 < 1 min read


Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat emphasised that integrity is of utmost importance in elected officials, in his motion in Parliament on the governance of the Aljunied-Hougang Town Council.

Since the court judgement was published last month on the case of the misuse of town council funds, Mr Heng said that the Workers’ Party have ‘not accounted for their dishonesties and untruths.’

In a heated debate with WP’s Sylvia Lim, Mr Heng stressed that the High Court judge had found the leaders of AHTC liable, and in any corporate setting, ‘it is only right and proper that those whose integrity have been impugned, to step aside, and recuse themselves until they clear their names.’

Mr Heng said, “In the interim, should the workers party town councillors who have been found to have acted dishonestly and have been found to be in breach of their duties, whose conduct was found to be egregious, should they continue, and have access to public funds?”

“Those who participate in politics must be honest, upright people who can be trusted to uphold the public interest, speak the truth even at a cost to themselves, and admit their mistakes when they have done wrong,” said Mr Heng.

He added that the Government takes any accusation of dishonesty against political leaders very seriously, and that the Opposition must hold themselves to the same standards that they rightly impose on the Government.

The motion was passed in Parliament with 52 votes supporting it, 9 votes against it and 2 abstensions from Nominated Members of Parliament.

Image: Screengrab from ChannelNews Asia