Call For Accountability and Complete Transparency from the SAF

The Singapore People’s Party (SPP) offers our deepest condolences to the family of Aloysius Pang in their time of grief.

We are deeply concerned over the number of National Service (NS) fatalities.

Over the last 16 months alone, there has been no less than 7 full-time NS and 1 NSman who have died during training or while on duty.

Despite the many statements and promise of action, we still have sons of Singapore who are being killed in the line of duty, and during peace time.

This is unfathomable, and unacceptable.

Singaporeans need answers, and a lot more than just assurances.

Given the toll of fatalities over recent months, we have to ask if enough is being done to prevent unnecessary deaths. We call on the SAF to spare no effort in making a full investigation and inquiry in the cause of the tragedy and how it could have been prevented, and to make public the findings of the investigation. It is not just for Aloysius, but for each and every instance of NS fatality.

There must be accountability and complete transparency. If there had been mistakes made or lapses in vigilance, they must be uncovered and acknowledged. For only then can effective prevention truly start.

While we understand the need for an effective fighting force to defend Singapore, we cannot continue accepting that this has to come at the expense of lives.

Let’s start truly behaving and believing that one more death, is one more death too many.

Singapore People’s Party

Speech at the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) Forum, 4 Nov 2015

Dear Institute of Policy Studies members, distinguished guests and friends,

Good afternoon.

I thank Dr Gillian Koh, and Mr Tan Tarn How of the Institute of Policy Studies for inviting me to speak at this forum today. I also thank Mr Arun Mahizhnan for chairing this forum.

We acknowledge the percentage swing to the PAP in GE2015. It was a difficult battle fought in a difficult climate for theOpposition especially in a year when Singapore is celebrating its GoldenJubilee. This is the year where the PAP took special means to provide allSingaporeans, from cradle to grave with a slew of initiatives and incentives. The passing of Mr Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s first Prime Minister, also helped to stir emotions that tied Singaporeans to the PAP.

The history of politics and its election results is replete with ups-and-downs, like the swing of a pendulum for both the PAP and the Opposition, and so in a sense, this result was not a shock. We at the Singapore People’s Party (SPP), respect the choice of votes, and we will continue to work towards earning their trust.

Because we believe there is a fundamental role for the Opposition to play in Singapore society and areas for the Opposition to improve too.

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Response to National Day Rally Speech 2015

There were many issues raised by the Prime Minister in his national day rally speech. He was also campaigning for his party in his  speech, dishing out more goodies to Singaporeans. In a way, it seems to be an election speech.

By far, the most important topic was the tradeoff between economic growth and our need for foreign workers. This seems to be a permanent feature in every rally. While we must ensure a sustainable immigration policy, we continue to ensure our low birth rate does not erode our base of work force. As an opposition NCMP, I am fully aware that Singaporeans want better jobs. I also want to put Singaporeans first in policies. We do want to sustain a   business environment. But we must also try to improve the skill sets of Singaporeans, and improve the productivity of our local workforce. Singaporean employees want less foreign competition, but Singaporean firms have been asking for relaxation of foreign worker quota. As a politician, my aim is to balance two sides of the equation, for the benefit of both sides.

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Public Transport Council (Amendment) Bill

Madam Speaker,

I welcome the new role of the PTC corporation. The new PTC aimed to undertake surveys obtaining public feedback will be an important platform for ensuring a more sustainable public transport system. On this note, I would like to propose that the PTC be allowed to explore deregulation of our public transport service.

I understand that the bus service license is a tool to help control and regulate bus service quality. But there are merits for deregulations – we allow Singaporeans to create the most fitting solutions for their transport problems.

Bearing in mind that our public transport infrastructure is waning, we must explore the opportunity to loosen our regulations and ensure private sector capacity can help service our citizens. I can imagine how unquenched public demand for transport can create private bus services. I can also imagine how our bottlenecks during peak hours can be solved.

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