Saturday, April 18, 2009

DBS is aware

No, DBS is not AWARE, they are just aware.

Observers have already observed (yes, a tautology!) and questioned the motives of DBS having a press release concerning Josie Lau's appointment as AWARE's new president.

It has also been established (by the Business Times) that Josie was part of the team behind DBS's adoption of Christian charity Focus on the Family, an organisation based in the United States and has a branch in Singapore.

DBS's press release is more than it meets the eye. When someone "breaks rank" with the organisation, it should be dealt with privately.

Why the release? Is this public relations and communications management on the part of the bank? This is all the more a valid decision, given the public relations nightmare they had late last year.

In going public with their opinions of Josie Lau, it is clear DBS is exercising some form of public relations management. This implies they know the implications and repercussions on the banks reputation in view of the events that has shredded AWARE's reputation to bits.

This implies they acknowledge the position and history of employee Josie Lau, and anticipate another public relations nightmare should the matter be not addressed.

Oh well.

I still have a burning question. A question that has yet to be answered, or even addressed: Is there an alliance behind the recent takeover of AWARE?

The situation at AWARE is not a situation. It is information warfare. Information is being hidden and/or withheld, and whatever is available is being pieced. This does not make for effective journalism, to be fair.

Various speculatiors have created even more speculation. I believe we should locate the issue at its very core. Why is there such a takeover? Who or what coordinated it?

There has been some discomfort (by AWARE members) towards the takeover - before, during and after it has occurred. Why is that so? Are they being intimidated? What is intimidating them?

In the end, as I have already mentioned, the biggest loser is women's rights and awareness. The NGO and civil society scene also suffers. Gender equality and its advocacy suffers. There is no victory for any one, even the alleged alliance, and of course, DBS included. (unrelated, but I no longer have my DBS debit card subscription. It just expired and I did not want to renew it.)


Glass Castle said...

Really really excellent post Sam!!


Lim Leng Hiong said...

Hi Sam,

In the latest press release, Josie Lau said that the DBS issue has been resolved for now.

In light of the new information that Claire Nazar had nominated most of the new Exco, including Josie Lau herself, I think this suggests that the tussle over AWARE's leadership is a good old-fashioned gang fight.

Perhaps some of the veterans wanted to get the support of outsiders to help further their goals, but are caught by surprise when the newcomers suddenly seized power.

Now it seems as if both sides are going to play politics.

I have a bad feeling about this...

Sam Ho said...

thanks. been sacrificing sleep.

this is information warfare. they will comment and speculate, but it's important we deal fairly with facts and fairly explain the implications of the events.

thanks lim for the link. everyone who is different in any way, will play a different politics.

even if two identical women in almost every way, may not have the same politics if they share not the same vocab.

JayF said...

So Claire Nazar decided she needed some outside muscle to settle an internal dispute but was surprised when the help overdid things but ousting more then what she expected? So was her surprise at the large turnout that day an act, or did her friends decide that they know what's best?

From what written here, seems like Claire got cold feet...

zhanzhao said...

Its interesting to note that the so called "oldguards" have been pretty much open about their views and opinions, while the "young blood" are the ones that seem conservative and tightlipped. From the various interviews on the Sunday papers, it seems that although the various old guard members do have slightly differing views, they at least support each other, while the "youngsters" can't even seem to open their mouth without being given permission..... by whom?

Permission being granted by any one single person is akin th the organization being run by that one person, rather than as an organization or committee.

Anders Brink said...

They have been invaded by right-wing Christians. It's not AWARE anymore, but some pastor of some Christian group that's calling the shots.

It's painfully obvious that it's an orchestrated attempt. The simple fact of them refusing to talk should bring ringing alarm bells.