Singapore

New PAP candidate clarifies remark about setting up institute

New People's Action Party (PAP) candidate Ng Ling Ling, who was criticised online for trying to take credit for setting up a training institute, clarified her remarks yesterday.

Ms Ng, 48, the former managing director of Community Chest, made the claim during candidate introductions at the People's Action Party headquarters last Thursday.

At the time, she said: "I set up the Social Service Training Institute (SSTI) and allocated funds to ensure that social service agencies can run critical programmes."

In a Facebook post yesterday, Ms Ng's former colleague Richard Giam said this was a "false claim", as the institute was set up by its founding director Tan Bee Heong. Ms Ng joined the organisation later, he added.

Yesterday, Ms Ng confirmed that Ms Tan was indeed the director of the SSTI.

In a Facebook post, Ms Ng said: "I was a member of her pioneer team. My role was to help operationalise the institute and ensure (its financial sustainability)."

The PAP new face, who is expected to be fielded in Ang Mo Kio GRC, added: "Work in the social services sector is a team effort.

"I had passionate colleagues who inspired me, and I am thankful for the mentorship of many during my journey in NCSS, SSTI and the Community Chest."

SSTI was the training arm of the National Council of Social Service (NCSS). It is now known as the Social Service Institute.

Mr Giam, in his post on Ms Ng, said: "I cannot publicly claim that I set up a team when I was only one of the contributing members. It would be very misleading and deceptive."

He added that he reported to Ms Ng when she was at SSTI.

Speaking to The Straits Times, Ms Tan, who is now general manager of the Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund, said Ms Ng joined SSTI a few months after it was set up as one of the heads of department.

She added: "She helped to build it up. It was a team effort."

Commenting on Mr Giam's Facebook post, Mr Gerard Ee, the NCSS president at the time, called the remark a "mere Freudian slip" on Ms Ng's part.

In comments to The Straits Times, Mr Giam, who is founding chief executive of fund-raising firm Rainmakerz, said he just wanted to rectify public perceptions and was glad Ms Ng had responded.

He said: "As she has clarified things, I think we should move on."

GENERAL ELECTION 2020