Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Blue on Blue: Part 8(a) Private Affairs

The Singapore defence ministry's Public Affairs directorate (PAFF) is ailing. Don't take my word for it. Please see the following comments from an insider.

I am posting the comments with the writer's permission because I feel you need to know the state of play at PAFF.

The comments will help you figure out why PAFF officers are demoralised and why some have voted with their feet. It helps explain the Singapore media's exasperation when trying to write credible stories about the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) - some newspaper editors have essentially turned their back on MINDEF/SAF.

I will not turn my back on the SAF because the prevailing attitude at PAFF is alarming.

You think you had a bad day at work or at your unit? Read on and reflect.

Dear David,
Just a quick email to tell you how much I have enjoyed reading your blog. Most, if not all, of your remarks about Public Affairs are spot-on.

I have one comment though.

I believe you must be aware that Public Affairs' "behaviour" as a whole is very much the result of one person's misguided "leadership" and mismanagement. Unfortunately, each time you mention Public Affairs in your posts, it does come across that everyone working in Public Affairs thinks and behaves like that misguided being.

Nothing can be further from the truth. Most Public Affairs officers are decent folks. Most do not have a choice but to do his bidding - they do not agree but they have no choice, largely because they have no other options but to carry on working at Public Affairs even if they have to drag themselves to work each day and face his nonsense. The few who have choices and options have demonstrated their disagreement by leaving.

I should know. I am one of the lucky few who were able to find another job before handing in my letter.

Perhaps in your subsequent posts, you should consider drawing a clearer distinction and direct the fire at that one being instead of pointing at the entire Public Affairs directorate. On behalf of my genial but hapless former colleagues and good friends I have left behind in Public Affairs, I thank you in advance.

Do keep on writing!


Izwan Abu Shama said...

True to the core.

If the work environment situation is left to be desired, then there's no motivation for anyone to come to work, know all sorts of livewire activity were happening and ongoing.

This have to change. Really.

goat89 said...

Following orders with no choice? Same here, I hate this kind of stuff. So bloody rigid.