In his 2008 National Day Rally speech, PM Lee announced new rules governing the space for political engagement and activism in the country. Part of these changes includes the opening of the Speakers’ Corner at Hong Lim Park for Protests from 1 Sep 2008.
For Singapore citizens, there is no longer a need to apply for a police permit as the administration of Hong Lim Park is now under NParks.
According to the NParks website, Singapore permanent residents can also take part in a demonstration at Speakers' Corner and are required to apply for a police permit only if they want to organise a demonstration themselves or to speak at the Corner. Foreigners however will have to apply for a permit to conduct or take part in any activity at the Corner.
Whether you regard this as political generosity or tokenism, every channel of expression (political, artistic … etc) has the potential to garner attention to issues and change public mindsets and perceptions.
As such, every attempt at utilising these channels, no matter how trivial or grand, deserves some attention. Hence this blog was created to serve as a shared calendar of events at Hong Lim Park.
If you are planning an event or know of an event at Speakers’ Corner, please let me know so I can update it on the calendar.
I can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org