by: Ajax Copperwater/

Ever heard of this joke?

Question: Why doesn’t Singapore has a cosmonaut yet?
Answer: Because the Singapore Government was afraid that the cosmonaut might migrate to Mars.

I chanced upon a news article, which featured President’s Scholar, Miss Xiao Yifei. Well, I say good for her for receiving a prestigious scholarship through diligence and immersing herself in charity works. A remarkable lady!

However, that’s not what caught my attention. The below-mention did:

“19-year-old Yifei came to Singapore from China when she was four years old.

Though she carries a dual citizenship, the former Raffles Institution student said she has always considered herself a Singaporean and will have no issues renouncing her Chinese citizenship when she reaches 21.”

Wait a minute… Since when does Singapore allow dual citizenship? A check with Wikipedia came out:

“Minors who are dual or multiple citizens by birth on foreign soil, by descent from foreign parents or by naturalisation before the age of 18 are required to renounce all foreign citizenships by the age of 22 or may lose their Singaporean citizenship.”

Hence, this explains Miss Xiao’s circumstance. It was only possible in her case, being born in China and naturalized before the age of 22, as it’s forbidden for anyone 22 (or above 21 for males obliged to serve National Service) to hold dual citizenships.

But, hang on… I have served alongside non-Singapore citizens during my NS stints. Good fellows every one of them. The ban on dual citizenship does not make any sense when National Service (NS) comes into play.

So, what’s in a citizenship which was so contentious during the last General Election?

A citizenship guarantees a citizen protection by the nation; and gives the citizen several rights and benefits from the nation. The citizen usually gets the lion’s share of the pie. Of course, these rights and benefits come with obligation to the nation as well.

Most Singaporeans think this is not the case in Singapore. Flip through any blog and you will find foreigners getting priorities or preference at jobs, education, NS deferment, etc. over Singaporeans.

Of course these are just hearsay and cannot be verified first-hand, but the over-crowding of our public infrastructure due to the influx of foreigners, gives some credence to this.

The real problem though is over-crowding – there are just simply too many people in this country.

Humans were never meant to live in high-density areas. We are hard-wired to be territorial. Living and working on top of each other, and having so many people around us 24/7 only increases the feeling of suffocation.

Then there is this migratory nature of humans, often seeking to better our living conditions. Sometimes, it’s just a seeking of change of environment or to experience a different culture.

But unlike other countries, Singapore is city-state. Which means that citizens can’t uproot from a city and move to another within the same country. The only solution available to us is to move to another country.

In this globalised world, it simply doesn’t make sense to ban dual citizenship. To use the excuse that national security might be compromised due to multiple allegiance, is also not justifiable because we have Permanent Residents who are citizens of another country serving NS.

I strongly support the notion of dual citizenship for Singaporeans regardless of age and gender. This will allow Singaporeans to become fully a citizen of the globalised world, as well as live in another country to broaden their own experience.

In addition, allowing dual citizenships will also enable Singapore to have a bigger population, without physically straining living conditions here, as Singaporeans will be free to live and work elsewhere, and also benefit from services provided by both countries.

Singapore is a knowledge-driven economy and we need the exchange of ideas and people in order to move forward. Dual citizenship will enhance this exchange greatly.

Dual citizenship does not mean Singaporeans will forget about Singapore or abandon it in times of crisis. It gives restless humans a sense of belonging and home in two places. Moreover, it gives people a sense of acceptance and a feeling of not being discriminated for having more than one heritage – for having families overseas.

Remember the joke earlier? Now, do you see a Singaporean-Martian cosmonaut among today’s children?

Subscribe
Notify of
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
You May Also Like

HDB launches first batch of flats for sale under new measures – 4,089 units

On Wednesday (11 September), the housing and Development Board HDB) announced the…

Toddler sustains bumps and bruises while at pre-school centre

When her 21-month old son came home from a pre-school centre in…

被拒载、乘地铁遭责难 前线抗疫人员却饱受歧视

自新型冠状病毒爆发以来,疫情愈发严峻,并未出现缓和的情况。人们也对此警惕起来,对于稍有感冒症状的人都避恐不及。然而,如今医护人员却在严峻时刻,第一时间站在前线与病毒昼夜对抗。 原本应获得人们的尊敬的前线人员,却因病毒的高传播性,让人们反而对医护人员愈来愈警惕,因为他们正是与病毒正面交锋的前线人员,却面对歧视。 2月12日,一名医护人员叶小姐(译音)在脸书上发文,表示近日对于医护人员遭人们歧视的情景感到相当沮丧。 “任何护理人员、医生、诊所助理、前台、搬运工、清洁工、以及所有在默默付出的工作人员,都未曾预料到会有这么严峻的情况发生。” 她表示,“作为医护人员,我们也不想要在可能会让自己或家人受到感染的地方工作,也未曾想要接触病毒。” 她坦言,他和丈夫因橙色警戒级别,不得不将儿子的生日聚会推迟,当时他们仍在看病人。 “所以,请不要指责我们肮脏,将我们推开,也不要因为取消来自医院的订单,不要将我们扔出公共交通。我们也需要吃、住、工作然后回家与家人团聚。” 最后,叶小姐也感谢那些对医护人员送上小小心意,支持他们工作的人,比如提供他们免费鸡饭的人。 除了叶小姐以外,也有网民分享自己遭受歧视的经验。2月11日,一名医护人员王小姐(译音)亦在脸书上分享,自己因要去医院而被司机取消订单。 王小姐透露,当时她被司机拒绝后,便询问司机理由是否是因为要开往医院而被拒绝,司机回答,“是的”。 她随后在脸书发文,“像麻风患者一样被排斥,这是你们对待诚心诚意对待你们的方式。” 另名护士则在Instagram上分享自己目睹一名穿着护士服的人因乘坐地铁而被其他乘客大骂。…