OPINION: 7 Million Population White Paper Widens Trust Deficit Between Populace and Government - Simon Loh

Yahoo! News Singapore, 15 Feb 2013
The SG Conversation was a bold, promising step in the right direction to reconnect government and people, rebuild trust, and take a more inclusive approach to leadership. But in one fell swoop, pushing ahead with the White Paper has undermined any credibility the SG Conversation will have going forward; findings of which have yet to emerge or be shared.
Surely, discussions around “What makes Singapore our HOME? What are your hopes for our shared future? How can we have more HEART as a nation?” – all quoted from the SG Conversation website - would have had much to add to and help shape the White Paper.
Furthermore, as the population plan per se can only form a part of an overall strategy to achieve the vision of Singaporeans, releasing it at this point would be putting the cart before the horse.
It is worse to have been asked for an opinion, only to have it ignored, than not to have been asked at all. Just on this basis alone, there was sufficient merit to have held back the White Paper: to do the right thing by the thousands of Singaporeans who have given time to this nation-wide feedback exercise. Full story