Politicians respond to NSP's Cheo Chai Chen's sexist comment against Tin Pei Ling
Politicians have responded to National Solidarity Party (NSP) candidate Cheo Chai Chen's sexist comment against People's Action Party (PAP) candidate Tin Pei Ling by saying that her motherhood is "her weakness".
Mr Cheo who is running against Ms Tin and Workers' Party candidate Bernard Chen in Macpherson SMC told Today at the NSP headquarters in Jalan Besar yesterday: "The PAP's Tin Pei Ling has been working very hard. But she has just given birth, so voters should let her go home and rest, and take care of her child.
"In general, mothers love their children, so they spend a lot of time with them. If voters choose her, she might focus more on her child than on her voters. This is her weakness."
Backlash quickly followed online.
Mr Cheo, when asked about the comment by The Straits Times, said: "It was a joke. I did not mean it to be taken seriously."
NSP issued a statement on Facebook.
Ms Tin has also since responded in a Facebook post, which has been well-received online.
The new mother, who gave birth on Aug 5, said:
"I am confident that even as a mum, I can continue to focus on my work in Macpherson."
She also added: "I want to build a Singapore in which more women can successfully manage family and work responsibilities at the same time. What this needs are government and employer support, strong family ties with husbands playing active roles, and societal understanding and accommodation. I believe that together we can build such a Singapore."
Mr Cheo had also dismissed WP's Bernard Chen's youth saying that he is "inexperienced".
Chen, 29, is one of the youngest candidates this election.
In her post, Ms Tin defended Mr Chen, saying: "It is good to encourage and enable youths to serve. It is good that young Singaporeans are paying attention and getting involved in the GE.
"It shows that young Singaporeans are willing to stand up for their beliefs and work hard to achieve a better future for our country."
PAP's Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC candidate Mr Ng Eng Hen also defended Ms Tin in a Facebook post.
He said: "Mothers are strong, very strong when motivated."
Mr Ng said that he had advised Ms Tin to do less house to house and market visits but she didn't listen to him.
He concluded his post saying: "Those who dare to challenge mothers - beware."
Meanwhile, Mr Cheo's colleague at NSP, Ms Kevryn Lim, who announced earlier this week that she is a single mother, also responded to his comments.
She said: "I believe, Ms Tin, like all mothers and myself can also be a career woman of their own and manage their time respectively without neglecting anyone in the family."