“The People’s Action Party (PAP) Government is a caring one which listens to the fears and concerns of Singaporeans”, he said, adding to the growing list of sweeping mothermood statements made by PAP leaders in this election.
Dr Vivian also rebutted criticisms from ordinary Singaporeans that he has been ‘stingy’ in using state funds to help needy Singaporeans.
‘I think there is one key question the voters of Singapore are asking us. The question is, ‘Do you care about me?’ It is not about how smart you are or a matter of how detailed your plans are. But your heart,’ he said.
During a parliamentary session in July 2007, PAP MP Dr Lily Neo made an impassioned appeal to Dr Vivian to increase the monthly allowance of Public Assistance (PA) recipients from $290 to $320 monthly, or about $1 a day.
Dr Vivian retorted callously:
“How much do you want? Do you want three meals a day at a hawker center, food court, or restaurant?”
Though Dr Vivian spent months agonizing over whether to raise the amount of assistance to PA recipients by $1 a day, he was quick to burst the YOG budget by more than three times to a shocking $387 million dollars of which he described as “value for money” in an interview with Straits Times in August 2010: