Labour movement 'not a one-man operation': Chan Chun Sing confident of NTUC's plans if he moves to new role

Labour movement 'not a one-man operation': Chan Chun Sing confident of NTUC's plans if he moves to new role

Chan Chun Sing Interview (2)
(Photo: Gaya Chandramohan)

SINGAPORE: Whichever portfolio labour chief Chan Chun Sing is given when the Cabinet is reshuffled, he is confident that the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) will continue its work and "get things done". 

The labour movement is not a one-man operation, he said, but a collective one. Even if there are organisational changes, there must be a certain "unity of vision", Mr Chan told reporters on Thursday (Apr 19) at a media briefing on his upcoming May Day message.

"We are always conscious that if you are around and things get done, that’s one level of competency. But if you are no longer around and things still get done because there’s a collective vision and ownership, that is a higher order of competency that I think we all should aspire towards," Mr Chan said. 

He cited the example of the labour movement updating its constitution late last year, when 97 per cent of its delegates supported its vision to serve all workers in Singapore, including freelancers and migrant workers.

"Do you think this is the contribution of one individual? It was a collective effort and I think we can be confident that the labour movement will be able to hold onto the things that we believe in and get things done," said Mr Chan, who is also Minister in the Prime Minister's Office.

He was tight-lipped about his potential new appointment in the upcoming Cabinet reshuffle: "Where I go, what do I do, that’s the Prime Minister’s prerogative so if there is any change, wait for the Prime Minister and his announcement."

He added: "We should remind ourselves to be more focused on where the country is going rather than where the individual might be going."

There have been speculations that Mr Chan, who is part of the fourth-generation leadership, may be the next Minister of Trade and Industry. He is also one of the ministers who have been tipped as future prime ministerial candidates.

Mr Chan entered politics in 2011 and was appointed Acting Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports as well as Minister of State for Information, Communication and the Arts.

In September 2013, Mr Chan became the Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for Defence before his current role as secretary-general of NTUC.

Source: CNA/fs/(gs)

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