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Rotary Club clarifies: We do not harbor political ambition

Posted by temasektimes on May 29, 2012

The Rotary Club of Singapore has responded to a charge by former PAP MP Dr Tan Cheng Bock that it is interfering with local politics with a generous donation of $100,000 to PAP losing candidate for Hougang Desmond Choo on the eve of the by-election.

In a post on his Facebook on Sunday, Dr Tan wrote:

“Is the club taking a position in politics? Is it within the ambit of its constitution? I have always been a supporter of the Rotary Club but I was disappointed by this action.”

In an interview with the Straits Times today, Rotary Club President Kumar Tapan Rao said:

“The Rotary Club is not making any donation to any political party. We are raising funds for a project to help the elderly in Singapore.”

The Chairman of the Foundation of Rotary Clubs Mr David Tong added that the Club’s Constitution bans members from taking part in any political activity in the name of their clubs.

When contacted by the media, Mr Choo said that the funding should go to anybody running a good programme to benefit the people.


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Zaobao Chief Editor attacks Low Thia Kiang

DPM Teo raps Low Thia Kiang: I hope he will move away from his combative tone

Dr Tan Cheng Bock questions Rotary Club’s donation to Desmond Choo

Post-mortem of Hougang by-election: PAP continues to lose ground to WP

Prof Bridget Welsh: PAP has miscalculated in its by-election campaign

PM Lee encouraged by improvement in PAP’s result in Hougang


25 Responses to “Rotary Club clarifies: We do not harbor political ambition”

  1. George said

    I smell a rat here as the timing by rotary club to donate such a sum thru a politician is not right.

    • Compatriot said

      This is what and where precisely the PAP has enacted a law to its gain to protect its existence through parliament that banned any kind of monetary donation from abroad,locals or otherwise to any registered political party for GE or BE

      Singaporeans deserve to be defended and protected of its integrity and sovereignty when the laws of the land that which were passed in parliament has been brazenly encroached and impinged

      There is an act of infiltration and the relevant bodies and those with authorities need to soldier on

      • Compatriot said

        The Rotary Club is an international association of professionals and businessmen which were founded in the US in 1905 calls themselves as Rotarian to promote community service

        The Rotary Club in Singapore is registered with the Registrar of Society as a local club its membership comes from the professionals and businessmen and administrated with a constitution

        If what the local club had clarifies that its entity board of management do not harbour political ambitions.and is not making any donation to any political party WHY then the club made a donation of S$1000.000 to the PAP political losing candidate for Hougang Desmond Choo during the by-election

        This act made by this local club is highly and fundamentally questionable

        Mr rotarian man I dont have an academic background nor being a professional like yourself to have understand what you have said.
        But what I can say is,you are not being transparent with bigotry and hypocrisy


      • Compatriot said

        Desmond Choo the PAP contested losing candidate for HG/BE
        It will be magnanimously known if you could handover the S$100K to the WP to save the face and image of the Rotary Club of Singapore

        I just wonder,…..

  2. Spouting rubbish! said

    Prove it. Give it to the WP as they have been serving HG for years and the old folks there definitely need the upgrading of the toilets where the PAP deprive them of. Don’t give the lamn excuse that giving to DC will also do the job. HG want WP to do the job or they would have vote for DC.

  3. Elusive Scorp said

    So David Tong….. you haven’t answer the question….. will your club be donating out the 100k for good cause of Hougang….

  4. P Koh said

    The intention was good and there is no doubt about it. The timing and the party to which this act of Charity was addressed to was as the saying goes ” at the wrong place and the wrong time”. Should never have been an issue and should stay as such.

  5. Wonder why the Rotary Club has the word “Rot” in it ?

  6. One Eye Jack said

    You can deny all you want that the act was not political but in the eyes of the public, you were caught with your hands in the cookie jar…

    Not a political donation ??

    Yeah… tell it to the marines.

    • ANGRY Bird said

      exactly, if he tells it to the animals in the zoo, they most likely believe him. Hello, Singaporeans are not daft and stupid, you know?

  7. Jack Ng said

    Rotary Club should be expected to donate the 100K to Hougang TC to help the Hougang elderly. Ultimately, they are donating to benefits the elderly, not a political party.

  8. Dont_Bluff_lah said

    But why choose Desmond Choo?? Is his welfare program the best in Singapore? And why choose to donate during the BE period?? What about other constituencies, they not worth donating too??

  9. tryme said

    don’t forget Teo Chee Hean also senior member of Club ,,

    “No political intentions” says Rotary Club of Singapore:

    “The club’s president Kumar Tapan Rao told The Straits Times on Monday: ‘The Rotary Club is not making any donation to any political party. We are raising funds for a project to help the elderly in Singapore.'”

    Let’s see:

    1. You announce your $100,000 donation a few days before the by-election.
    2. You give it to the PAP candidate’s program.
    3. The PAP candidate himself announces your donation.
    4. The donation benefits the residents of the ward the candidate is contesting.

    But it is all non-political?

    Does Mr Kumar Tapan Rao think the public is stupid?

    So if the Workers’ Party also has a toilet upgrading program, will the Rotary Club donate $100,000 to that too? Because, you know, Rotary Club is non-political what. I hear Hougang also needs a wet market. Donate leh. I am sure the ELECTED representative of Hougang, Mr Png Eng Huat, will welcome any non-political donations from the Rotary Club.

  10. tryme said

    Kumar, you talk with a bag of salt!!

    your Bloody big Head Got Stuck in a Washing Machine

  11. USS iowa said

    Shame to Rotary Club. It is an elite club and serves the elites. It is now an official PAP supporter.

    • Compatriot said

      Nevertheles,this chairman Kumar was caught naked with his pants down he has acted recklessly with a bad motive and Goodness has prevails to exposed him of his evil doings

      GOD is great

  12. USS iowa said

    Since Rotary Club has ventured into the political arena, it should register itself as a political party.
    The Rotary Club under its present chairman has taken the wrong turn, if its ordinary members do not quickly correct this, all the good works it has done in the past will be negated.

  13. denzuko1 said

    If does not harbour any political intention, then they would have donate it to town counsel instead of Desmond Choo. who are they trying to bluff?

  14. spotlessleopard said

    Kumar….the citizens of Singapore are not divided into CASTE ….We do not have Dalits or PARIAHS (UNTOUCHABLES) in Singapore…please be honest with yourself….and come right out to admit that the latest “good work” of Rotary Club is nothing but a Political Donation……Shame on you Kumar …..Singaproe does not have a CASTE SYSTEM

  15. Jack said

    the ex chairman is a PAP member

  16. bobo said

    Rotary club’s website..


  17. Henry said

    This indecency deserves a COI … Call the President’s office to commission this team …

  18. Compatriot said

    When the Rotary Club chairman Kumar was found twisting in the political arena flirting with a motive obviously with intent by donating the S$100K to the losing PAP candidate for Hougang BE Desmond Choo.This begs of a question that this sordid kind of practises needed to be addressed questionably by the relevant and authorative bodies of law

    Every action made there is always a motive behind and this has led to suggest that its ponderables is variably an open range eg cronyism or otherwise “you scratch my back and in return I will scratch your back”

    I believe the Rotary Club,a non-proprietary club holds its constitution as apolitical,and with its manifestations to provide social and community services through kind or monetary donations to the needful and deserved recepients should be well applauded

    But its shameful,The club image is at large for it has delved and involved in politics

    Its reigning club chairman was found blatantly involved in the political arena with an obvious motive by donating S$100K to the losing PAP politcal candidate for Hougang By-Election Desmond Choo

    It has shown,known though through common law,it has infringes and impinged its club’s constitutional law objectives and its statutory declarations

    Justice is blind and no doubt must also been seen

    I wonder,would the relevant authorative bodies of law and the registrar of society would comment whether that there is a penalty or otherwise

    Law abiding Singaporeans would like to be enlighten to hear from your goodoffice

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