I, too, did a double-take at the headline.
Either we’ve obtained the God level in our clickbait mastery, or this is a misunderstanding that should be addressed, if not it’ll be Ivan-Lim-ed.
Unfortunately, we’re still just level 98 in our clickbait mastery, because this is a misunderstanding that’s led to some free publicity for a fast-food restaurant.
Free 2-Piece Chicken Meal This Saturday
This image went viral after it was posted on Facebook Page “Say NO to PAP” this morning (1 July 2020):
The words on the image translate to: “May peace be upon you but seriously PAP? You gonna bait us with Texas Chicken? If it’s Arnold’s (another fried chicken fast-food chain), then it might be fine.”
This is the caption that comes with it:
Aljunied GRC residents! Your vote cost only 2 pieces of Texas Fried Chicken to buy over! Whose money is he spending to bribe you? Otherwise what do they get in return for the political sponsorship?
What kind of a teacher is he who brings such education to your children? Shamsul so shameful.
“Dear Sir / Madam,
You are invited to receive 1 set of Texas Chicken 2 Piece Meal. This event is sponsored by TEXAS CHICKEN and you are requested to attend as listed below:
Saturday, July 4, 2020 AM to 12:00 AM
Place: Block 527 Bedok North SL 3 (Shaik Abdul Kader AL Jailani Eat Place Pte Ltd) Terms & Conditions
- Only those who receive this letter, must attend
- Limited to 1 set per family
- Please bring this letter with your Identity Card to receive the invitation I hope you have the opportunity to attend this event I would love to meet you, if there is a chance”
For your info, Google did a bad job in the translation: the timing should be 11:30am to 12pm instead, and not at 12am.
Just some context here: Shamsul Kamar is one of the PAP candidates who’s contesting in Aljunied GRC, a constituency that has been held by Workers’ Party since 2011. He’s also part of the team in 2015 to reclaim the GRC, but only managed to garner 49.04% of the votes back then.
Like his comrades in the constituency, he’s not given up. Here’s his introduction video and of course one can only wonder what’s with the large head space:
And you can bet that the man is going to respond after such an allegation is made.
And respond he did.
Planning for this Event Started Even Before The Election Was Announced
The image is real, and so is the free 2-piece chicken meal.
However, according to Mr Shamsul, this event is just one of the many events his team organised, and this was planned before the General Elections were announced.
They’ve been running programmes to assist specific groups of people, and in this case, it was to help “lower-income, Malay-Muslim families”, and it was suggested by the community leaders from the Malay Activity Executive Committee (MAEC).
The event has since been postponed and will happen after the GE instead.
Here’s his full reply:
Dear residents of Kaki Bukit,
It has come to my attention that there is a photo circulating via social media regarding a food distribution event on Saturday, 4 July 2020.
It is unfortunate that there were allegations by netizens that I am only helping the Malay community and that I am luring people to vote by providing them with free food.
I would like to state that these allegations are untrue.
Over the past 5 years, we have regularly worked with various stakeholders, private companies and Non-Profit Organisations to assist all residents of Kaki Bukit regardless of race, language or religion. On certain occasions, these organisations have specific groups of people they would like to help. For example, some may want to focus on helping the elderly, low-income families or single mothers. We welcome all the help we can get when it comes to our residents.
In this instance, the organisation wanted to focus on the lower-income, Malay-Muslim families. Our community leaders from the Malay Activity Executive Committee (MAEC) believed that this is a good initiative to help those in need. Planning for this event started before the General Elections were announced.
As the announcement of the General Elections was made recently, we postponed many events that were supposed to take place during this period such as the North East CDC Jobs Fair, Kaki Bukit Covid-19 Care Voucher distribution and hot meals distribution where I would usually be involved.
Similarly, I have already instructed the committee to postpone the distribution to after the General Elections. Since yesterday, the committee members have already started calling the affected residents on the postponement.
I sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused to the residents affected by this decision.
So who’s the biggest winner here?
The sponsor, Texas Chicken. And to do everyone a favour, here’s the meal we’re talking about:
I’d move to Kaki Bukit just for that.
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