CHINA : Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew says the attorney-general's decision not to prosecute Workers' Party member James Gomez does not make him less of a liar or less dishonest.
In a statement released from China, where he is currently on a visit, Mr Lee reiterated what he had called Mr Gomez earlier.
The Minister Mentor had said that Mr Gomez was a liar and dishonest and that Workers' Party chairman Sylvia Lim and the party secretary-general Low Thia Khiang did not act honourably by shielding him.
Mr Lee added that if Mr Gomez claims he is not a liar nor dishonest, he can go to court to clear his name.
Earlier on Friday, Mr Gomez had been let off with a stern warning for threatening an Elections Department officer, ending a three week long saga.
Investigations by police started after a complaint by the Elections Department against Mr Gomez on May 6.
Police said that after reviewing the evidence, the Public Prosecutor was satisfied that Mr Gomez had used threatening words towards a public servant.
He could have been fined up to $5,000 or jailed up to one year.
But police decided it would let Mr Gomez go with a warning instead, as he had been cooperative and had not committed any previous criminal offences.
The saga revolved around Mr Gomez's claim that he had applied for a minority candidate certificate at the Elections Department before the May 6 General Election.
Security camera footage from the Elections Department later showed that he did not submit the application form but instead put it into his bag.
Mr Gomez subsequently admitted he did not hand in the form and apologised, saying he was distracted.
But People's Action Party leaders found his apology inadequate and accused him of lying and trying to discredit the Elections Department.
"It is in the AG's authority to exercise his discretion, but his decision not to prosecute does not, in any way, make James Gomez less of a liar or less dishonest. I reiterate what I have called him, a liar and dishonest, and that Ms Sylvia Lim and Mr Low Thia Khiang did not act honourably by shielding him. If Gomez claims he is not a liar nor dishonest, he can go to court to clear his name," said Mr Lee in his statement.
A first-time offender should be no excuse for minimalising the severity of a crime. Nor is a simple 'warning' warranted when there is no crime to begin with. It is the exact same tactic used earlier on CSJ when he tried to leave the country. At least he had the courage to stand up for himself and challenge the police to charge him. Acceptance of such warnings is wrongful confession to the crime itself.
I am ashamed at how the supposed 'father' of Singapore has handled this issue. I am ashamed at his lack of compassion. I am ashamed that this is whom Singaporeans are suppose to look up to. I am ashamed that he cannot accept an apology, let go of a grudge, and yet allow his son to deal out an apology with automatic expectation of public acceptance. Above all, I am ashamed all this is over a piece of paper.