No need to raise NCMP allowance

I disagree with the suggestion to raise the allowance for Non-Constituency MPs (NCMPs) ("Raise allowance for better parliamentary commitment" by Mr Tan Kwong Moh; yesterday).

Most politicians, whether they are MPs, NCMPs or Nominated MPs, treat their positions as a service to the nation without any favour or economic consideration.

In short, theirs is a labour of love and not a labour to be compensated.

Maybe there are some MPs who desire to do the job full time, but there are other factors that prevent them from doing so.

It is inconceivable that a medical specialist or an engineer should give up his profession wholly to serve his constituency.

Ideally, such professionals can work on a part-time basis or as consultants so that they haveample time to serve the public or their constituents.

This arrangement enables them to continue practising in their fields of specialisation, and, at the same time, helps them retain and enhance their skills and expertise.

The general election is held every five years, and there is no assurance that MPs will be re-elected in subsequent elections.

By keeping their jobs during their tenure as MPs or NCMPs, they can fall back on their careers if they are not re-elected or leave the political arena later on.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 30, 2016, with the headline 'No need to raise NCMP allowance'. Print Edition | Subscribe