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Parliamentary session and filed questions for 1 October 2018

The Singapore Parliament will sit at 12:30 on Monday, 1 October 2018 for the 83rd session of the 13th Parliament.

*70 oral questions and 27 written question had been scheduled to be asked.

There will be Oath of Allegiance from :

Mr Arasu Duraisamy (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Mr Douglas Foo (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Mr Terence Ho Wee San (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Prof Lim Sun Sun (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Mr Mohamed Irshad (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Ms Anthea Ong (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Ms Irene Quay Siew Ching (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Assoc Prof Walter Theseira (Nominated Member of Parliament)

Ms Yip Pin Xiu (Nominated Member of Parliament)

At the commencement of Public Business, there will be an introduction of Government Bill:

1. Land Transport Authority of Singapore (Amendment) Bill (Minister for Transport),

2. Legal Aid and Advice (Amendment) Bill (Minister for Law),

3. Serious Crimes and Counter-Terrorism (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill (Minister for Home Affairs),

4. Civil Defence and Other Matters Bill (Minister for Home Affairs),

5. Developers (Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing) Bill (Minister for National Development),

6. Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Bill (Second Minister for Finance).

    (President’s recommendation signified).

And 9 Government Bills will be read for the 2nd time:

1. Parliamentary Elections (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 34/2018] – (Prime Minister) – Second Reading.

2. Gas (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 36/2018] – (Minister for Trade and Industry) – Second Reading.

3. Electricity (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 35/2018] – (Minister for Trade and Industry) – Second Reading.

4. Insolvency, Restructuring and Dissolution Bill [Bill No. 32/2018] – (Minister for Law) – Second Reading.

5. Variable Capital Companies Bill [Bill No. 40/2018] – (Second Minister for Finance) – Second Reading.

6. Supreme Court of Judicature (Amendment No. 2) Bill [Bill No. 33/2018] – (Minister for Law) – Second Reading.

7. Income Tax (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 37/2018] – (Second Minister for Finance) – Second Reading.

8. Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 38/2018] – (Minister for National Development) – Second Reading.

9. Environmental Public Health (Amendment) Bill [Bill No. 39/2018] – (Minister for the Environment and Water Resources) – Second Reading.

Also there will be a Matter proposed to be raised on the Motion for the Adjournment (SO 2(8)(b)):

Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang (Nee Soon): Towards a Plastic-Lite Singapore.

Below are the questions filed towards the various Ministers

Prime Minister

Prime Minister

*Mr Alex Yam Ziming: To ask the Prime Minister whether he can (i) list all the components of the salaries of the Ministers and Prime Minister (ii) state the amounts, in months of salary, paid for each component for each year from 2013 to 2017 and (iii) confirm that these components are fully included in the Ministerial salary benchmark established in the White Paper on "Salaries for a Capable and Committed Government" that was debated in Parliament in January 2012 and are not payments over and above the salary benchmark.

*Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Prime Minister what measures are being taken to ensure that (i) the minimisation of the risk that SGX-listed companies experience a sudden deterioration in financial viability and (ii) SGXRegCo is sufficiently resourced to discharge its obligations.

Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Prime Minister in each year from 2013 to 2017 (a) what has been the actual National Bonus (in months) paid to Cabinet Ministers; and (b) what has been the actual Annual Variable Component (in months) paid to Cabinet Ministers.

Minister for Foreign Affairs

Minister for Foreign Affairs

*Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs whether Singapore will (i) send another consignment of humanitarian supplies to Bangladesh to provide aid for Rohingya refugees this year and (ii) consider increasing Singapore's financial contribution to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) next year.

*Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs in light of the two reports presented by the UN Fact-Finding Mission in September 2018, how can ASEAN further help to resolve the crisis related to the Rakhine State, which has caused a catastrophic human tragedy in and around Myanmar.

*Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs in light of the two reports presented by the UN Fact-Finding Mission in September 2018, whether Myanmar can be compelled to abide by Articles 14, 15, 22, 28, 31(2), read with Article 2, of the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration as well as Article 2, paragraph 2(i), Article 20, paragraph 4 and Article 7, paragraph (2)(e) of the ASEAN Charter.

Minister for Transport

Minister for Transport

*Mr Ang Hin Kee: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) what are the considerations that led to Singapore agreeing to Malaysia's request to postpone construction works of the High-Speed Rail (HSR) project; (b) whether Singapore is obligated to accept changes, if any, proposed by Malaysia to the HSR project; and (c) what is to be expected of Malaysia at the end of the suspension period if the project does not proceed eventually.

*Mr Dennis Tan Lip Fong: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) what was the basis for the agreed reimbursement of S$15 million by Malaysia to Singapore for abortive costs arising from the two-year suspension of works for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR); (b) what are the major works which will be suspended during the same period; and (c) whether there are any ancillary works or projects relating to or incidental to the HSR which will still continue in the next two years.

*Mr Murali Pillai: To ask the Minister for Transport whether the Ministry intends to maintain the current restriction of claiming compensation for damage to any building arising from the construction or operation of the railway or road tunnel to just structural damage and loss due to displacement resulting from structural damage and, if so, why.

*Mr Melvin Yong Yik Chye: To ask the Minister for Transport whether the Ministry can introduce measures to better protect private-hire vehicle drivers against harassment from commuters.

*Prof Fatimah Lateef: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) whether he can provide an update and findings on the pilot for high covered linkways across roads and crossings; and (b) when is the expected roll out for some of the long pending requests.

*Mr Ang Wei Neng: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) to date, what is the number of high shelters built on public roads and which span across roads with two lanes each way; (b) what is the average construction cost of such high shelters; and (c) whether the Ministry will consider building more of such high shelters across the island.

*Ms Foo Mee Har: To ask the Minister for Transport whether the construction of Jurong Region MRT Line (JRL) can be expedited by deploying resources from the delayed Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail project.

*Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) over the last five years, how many incidences of traffic lights breaking down as a result of short circuits during heavy rain have occurred; and (b) what is being done to ensure that our traffic systems remain in working condition during bad weather.

*Mr Saktiandi Supaat: To ask the Minister for Transport in light of the recent British Airways data breach (a) whether local airlines are knowledgeable about such data breaches; (b) whether there have been any hacking attempts in the past three years; (c) how are local airlines working with other international airlines and relevant authorities to safeguard the information of local and international passengers; and (d) whether existing air passenger protection legislation can be beefed up to protect passengers' rights in the event of a cybersecurity breach.

*Mr Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for Transport with the impending opening of Changi Airport's Jewel (a) what, and how many, jobs will be created; (b) what is the economic value of the jobs created; and (c) how will the Ministry help to place Singaporeans into these jobs.

*Mr Ang Wei Neng: To ask the Minister for Transport (a) in the past 10 years, whether CAAS has detected any case of duty airline pilots consuming alcohol or drugs before boarding aeroplanes in Singapore; (b) whether there are adequate laws that deter such behavior; and (c) whether all airlines operating out of Singapore airports have a sufficiently robust standard operating procedure to conduct random test to detect such errant pilots.

Mr Seah Kian Peng: To ask the Minister for Transport whether he can provide an update on the progress of the Thomson-East Coast MRT Line.

Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Transport how are innocent third-party victims of drink driving accidents protected by motor insurance.

Minister for National Development

Minister for National Development

*Mr Gan Thiam Poh: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) how many HDB flats have joined the Lease Buyback Scheme since the Scheme was first launched; (b) what is the total number for each flat type; (c) whether there have been younger applicants whose applications were rejected or approved on an exceptional basis; and (d) whether the Ministry will review and lower the minimum age requirement for each application.

*Mr Alex Yam Ziming: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) since 2009, whether exceptions to the rules for the Lease Buyback scheme have been exercised by HDB for applicants with unique circumstances; (b) if so, how many have been approved; (c) what have been the main reasons for rejection since the scheme's extension to 4-room flats since April 2015; and (d) whether HDB will exercise flexibility when only one of the spouse qualifies under the age criteria.

*Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) which repairs, replacements and enhancements will be included in the scope of Home Improvement Programme (HIP) 2; (b) for precincts which vote for HIP 2, whether there will be caveats related to the Voluntary Early Redevelopment Scheme (VERS) attached so as to minimise unnecessary expenditure since money has already been spent on HIP 2; and (c) what are the key differences between VERS and the Selective Enbloc Redevelopment Scheme in the aspects of valuation and acquisition pricing.

*Mr Saktiandi Supaat: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) what kind of upgrades will HDB flats receive under Home Improvement Programme (HIP) 2 to ensure that the flats are safe and liveable even at that age; (b) how will the Government ensure that there is sufficient manpower to carry out all the renewal works safely and efficiently; (c) how often will the Ministry conduct inspections to ensure flats and their amenities remain structurally safe and liveable throughout their lifespan; and (d) do the HIP 1 and 2 upgrades include the older rental flats.

*Er Dr Lee Bee Wah: To ask the Minister for National Development in view of the 370 applicants on the waitlist for heavy vehicle season parking spaces in and around Nee Soon GRC (a) how long will the waiting time be; and (b) what is the Ministry doing to expedite the waiting process.

*Mr Gan Thiam Poh: To ask the Minister for National Development whether there have been any imported fresh durians that have failed the food safety check or found to be contaminated or tainted with chemicals or excessive chemical agents that were not allowed to be imported for the past three years.

*Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar: To ask the Minister for National Development in the last five years, how many cases have been brought to HDB's attention of elderly parents who have been rendered homeless after their adult children chased them out of their flats even though the flats owned by these adult children have been bought initially with the proceeds from the elderly parents' sale of their own flats.

*Mr Muhamad Faisal Abdul Manap: To ask the Minister for National Development how is the land cost amount which is included in the sale price of a new HDB flat tabulated.

*Mr Kwek Hian Chuan Henry: To ask the Minister for National Development whether HDB flat applicants are given detailed advice on their eligibility for a HDB loan including the appropriate quantum to ensure that applicants will not overcommit and be unable to secure a loan after being successfully allocated the flat.

*Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for National Development whether the Ministry can expedite and extend the upgrading works in the common areas of private estates under the Estate Upgrading Programme especially in estates above 30 years old, with priority given to older estates.

*Er Dr Lee Bee Wah: To ask the Minister for National Development whether he can clarify on the timetable for implementing the Home Improvement Programme extension for the HDB estates that are now eligible.

*Mr Patrick Tay Teck Guan: To ask the Minister for National Development with regard to HDB flats in Boon Lay constituency which are more than 30 years of age and have completed the Home Improvement Programme (HIP), what more can the Ministry do to mitigate rain splashing into the common corridors, lift landings, corridors and front doors and windows of these flats.

*Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) in the last five years, how many accidents involving children under the age of 12 have occurred at commercial playgrounds, carnivals, fun fairs and amusement parks; (b) what measures are in place to ensure child safety; and (c) whether the Ministry has plans to review and update safety requirements at such venues.

*Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for National Development whether the Ministry will start a licensing system for the ownership of cats to prevent cat abandonment.

*Mr Zainal Sapari: To ask the Minister for National Development whether an unemployed single person above 35 years old with a disability is eligible for the Additional CPF Housing Grant (AHG) and Special CPF Housing Grant (SHG) when the person wishes to buy a HDB flat under the Singles Scheme.

*Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for National Development in view of the recent incidents of fruits sabotaged with needles in Australia, what precautionary measures are in place for fruits imported from Australia.

*Er Dr Lee Bee Wah: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) in the past year, how many disputes between neighbours have been reported to HDB; (b) how many were because of cigarette smoke; (c) how many were mediated successfully; and (d) whether there has been any disputes that were escalated to Community Disputes Resolution Tribunals or other channels.

*Mr Lim Biow Chuan: To ask the Minister for National Development whether HDB can review the amount of compensation payable to purchasers of flats who have to cancel their purchase due to divorce or nullity of marriage.

Mr Gan Thiam Poh: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) whether the Home Improvement Programme (HIP) can include replacements of windows for older flats and to provide aircon ledges to prevent the hazard of falling aircons for public safety; (b) how many households have opted for deferred payment instead of full settlement by cash under HIP so far; and (c) whether HDB has ensured that prospective buyers of such resale flats whose existing owner opted out of HIP is aware of this for fair sale purposes.

Mr Ang Wei Neng: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) whether the latest round of property cooling measures have achieved the intended objectives; (b) what is the rationale for tightening the loan-to-value (LTV) limits for first-time property buyers; and (c) what is the overall impact on the first-time property buyers in view of the latest cooling measures.

Mr Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for National Development over the last ten years (a) what has been the trend of successful tender bids for religious sites; and (b) what are the plans to intensify land use for such sites.

Minister for Health

Minister for Health

*Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for Health in light of the IT glitch in the computer system of clinics where patients received mislabelled medicines (a) what corrective action has been taken to ensure that the IT system is robust and secure; and (b) what measures are being taken to prevent such future incidences.

*Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong: To ask the Minister for Health what led to over 100 clinics prescribing the wrong dosage for 800 patients and whether there were any adverse effects for the affected patients.

*Mr Zainal Sapari: To ask the Minister for Health (a) what is the current total number of cleaning service providers that are contracted by the different hospitals under the Ministry; and (b) how does the Ministry ensure that other cleaning companies have the chance to build their capacity in this sector and prevent the hospital cleaning contracts from being monopolised.

*Mr Dennis Tan Lip Fong: To ask the Minister for Health whether any new and additional measures will be taken to (i) address the increase in elderly suicides and (ii) prevent or minimise elderly isolation.

*Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for Health (a) what are the health effects of prolonged exposure to secondhand smoke; (b) how many diagnoses of conditions related to secondhand smoke exposure are there each year in the past five years; (c) how many people in Singapore die because of secondhand smoke each year in the past five years; and (d) whether the Ministry will start collecting such data if it is currently not available.

*Dr Chia Shi-Lu: To ask the Minister for Health whether the Ministry will consider requiring manufacturers of health supplements to provide test results from accredited laboratories to back up their advertising claims in order to prevent inaccurate representation.

Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Health whether the Minister will consider extending additional financial support for (i) couples who experience pregnancy complications and require inpatient and outpatient healthcare and mental wellness support and (ii) expectant mothers who find it difficult to obtain maternity insurance from private insurance companies due to previously-experienced pregnancy complications.

Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Minister for Health (a) whether any vaccines made by Changsheng Biotechnology are used in Singapore; and (b) if so, what measures are being taken to ensure that these products are safe and medically efficacious.

Minister for Home Affairs

Minister for Home Affairs

*Mr Ang Wei Neng: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs for the past five years including the first eight months of this year (a) how many cases of arson relating to illegal money lending have been reported; (b) how many cases have been solved involving the arrest of the (i) culprits who set the fire and (ii) master mind behind the arson; and (c) whether the Ministry can consider increasing the punishment for crimes involving arson and illegal money lending.

*Mr Zainal Sapari: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) how does ICA ensure fairness, transparency and consistency during the evaluation process in approving citizenship applications by PR spouses of Singaporeans; and (b) what are the reasons for not stating the grounds for rejection of citizenship applications especially if spouses of Singaporean are involved.

*Mr Melvin Yong Yik Chye: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs in respect of recent studies which show that children having drug-abusing parents are more likely to take drugs later in life (a) what is the current number of generational-correlated drug offenders in Singapore; and (b) whether there are measures put in place to prevent the generational cycles of addiction.

*Mr Patrick Tay Teck Guan: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs what is the restraint policy for persons in custody, particularly those who may be vulnerable such as the elderly.

*Prof Fatimah Lateef: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs what is the strategy and sustainable action to handle the drug-related issues in the back lanes and coffee shops in Geylang, in particular Lorong 22 to Lorong 40.

*Mr Christopher de Souza: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) what is being done to deter the taking of voyeuristic photos or videos involving hidden cameras; and (b) whether there has been an increase in the number of police investigations and prosecutions related to this offence.

*Prof Fatimah Lateef: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) whether he can provide an update on the number of prosecutions, convictions and investigations carried out against cases of human trafficking in the last three years; and (b) what is the Government's response to Singapore's position in Tier 2 of the 2018 Trafficking in Persons Report published by the US Department of State.

*Mr Dennis Tan Lip Fong: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) what is the basis for ICA's blacklisting of Ms Clare Rewcastle-Brown; (b) what is the reason given to our Government for the blacklisting request; (c) who requested the blacklisting; and (d) whether the Ministry or ICA has (i) a policy of objective review of the bona fides of all blacklisting requests from a foreign state or leader and (ii) a system of regular reviews of existing blacklistings.

*Mr Lim Biow Chuan: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) whether the directors of Data Register Pte Ltd (previously known as Company Register Pte Ltd) will be investigated for any offence of cheating or deceiving companies/businesses by representing that they are a government agency; and (b) whether contracts entered into by companies/businesses due to such deception can be voided.

Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) in the past year, how many accidents have happened between motorists and pedestrians at zebra crossings; and (b) whether cameras can be installed at zebra crossings with high accident rates.

Ms Joan Pereira: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs how can the police help residents who receive unsolicited text messages from loansharks and finance companies, threatening them to pay up though they have no dealings with them whatsoever.

Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs for first-time offenders in Drug Rehabilitation Centres (DRCs) (a) what are the top three reasons they consume drugs; and (b) what is their median per capita household income.

Mr Dennis Tan Lip Fong: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs between 2008-2017, what is the number of cyclists on non-power assisted bicycles who have been caught each year while riding on the road for each of the offence of (i) beating red lights (ii) cycling against the traffic (iii) cycling in the dark without front white lights and/or rear red lights/reflectors and (iv) cycling on the right side of a motor vehicle proceeding in the same direction when not overtaking the motor vehicle.

Mr Murali Pillai: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs for each year from 2014 to 2018 (a) what is the total value of assets misappropriated or gained by offenders who have been convicted for committing economic crimes in Singapore; and (b) what is the total value of assets recovered by the enforcement authorities.

Mr Murali Pillai: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs whether notices providing guidance on the use of AED or highlighting the option of calling 995 to get help on the use of AEDs can be put at all public locations where AEDs are installed to assist members of public needing to use the AEDs but have not received training on how to use them.

Minister for Communications and Information

Minister for Communications and Information

*Ms Rahayu Mahzam: To ask the Minister for Communications and Information in light of the updated Advisory Guidelines issued by the Personal Data Protection Commission for NRIC and other national identification numbers (a) what are the initiatives that will be taken to ensure organisations review and implement the necessary changes to their business practices and processes to be aligned to the guidelines; (b) how will enforcement be carried out to check on organisations who continue to inappropriately collect NRIC numbers and ensure those who had previously done so dispose of these sensitive data in a proper manner; and (c) what is the platform and process for consumers or members of the public who wish to make a report on organisations who inappropriately collect NRIC numbers.

Minister for Finance

Minister for Finance

Minister for Education

Minister for Education

*Mr Saktiandi Supaat: To ask the Minister for Education (a) whether the Government will review the funding models for education and training programmes for Singaporeans; (b) whether the current funding model is optimal and effective (i) by classifying Continuing Education and Training (CET) and Pre-employment Training (PET) separately and (ii) in supporting the Skills Future and life-long learning efforts; and (c) whether there are different values attached to CET and PET programmes.

*Ms Rahayu Mahzam: To ask the Minister for Education (a) whether the alumni priority admission scheme for Primary 1 will be reviewed; (b) whether a higher proportion of admission places can be reserved for non-alumni related students in primary schools; and (c) whether in the current system, parents who are alumni members and active contributors have priority over parents who are just dormant alumni members.

Mr Gan Thiam Poh: To ask the Minister for Education (a) in the past three years, how many non-subsidised foreign students have been admitted into our universities and private institutions that offer degree and above programmes respectively; and (b) whether the Ministry will continue to make education an engine of economic growth to attract non-subsidised foreign students to study here.

Er Dr Lee Bee Wah: To ask the Minister for Education (a) how many Singaporeans have used up their SkillsFuture credit; (b) whether he can update the House on the review for the next phase of the national SkillsFuture Credit Scheme; and (c) whether there are plans to top up SkillsFuture credits.

Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong: To ask the Minister for Education (a) how many Singaporeans would have received training in Continuing Education and Training (CET) modules in Institutes of Higher Learning (IHL) under the SkillsFuture Series by the end of 2018; (b) what is the profile of the Singaporeans by age group and highest educational attainment; and (c) what are the expected Government expenditure and revenue for each IHL.

Minister for Law

Minister for Law

*Mr Murali Pillai: To ask the Minister for Law with regard to the expanded means test applicable to mentally disabled persons who are unable to work, whether the Ministry can treat legal aid applications by family members of the mentally disabled persons for appointment as deputies to manage their personal affairs as applications being made for and on behalf of the mentally disabled (instead of the individual family members) thereby entitling the legal aid applications to be assessed on the expanded means test.

Minister for Manpower

Minister for Manpower

*Mr Muhamad Faisal Abdul Manap: To ask the Minister for Manpower whether the Ministry maintains or plans to set up a watchlist for companies that engage in discriminatory employment practices not related to nationality but to other attributes such as gender and ethnicity.

*Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Minister for Manpower with regard to persons undergoing mediation by the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM) for alleged unfair dismissal (a) whether there are remedies other than reinstatement that are provided in the law given that the complainant may prefer other forms of redress instead; and (b) if so, in what proportion of alleged unfair dismissal mediation cases have non-reinstatement remedies been applied in each of the past five years and what have been these remedies.

*Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar: To ask the Minister for Manpower whether there are plans to review the retirement age and push it up to 65 years old automatically without any disruption to salary or benefits in light of Singaporeans living longer.

*Mr Melvin Yong Yik Chye: To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) which are the top three sectors that have successfully used the Professional Conversion Programme to recruit mid-career job seekers; and (b) what are the success factors.

Mr Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for Manpower over the last three years (a) what is the trend of illegal foreign worker dormitories being discovered; (b) how many instances of illegal housing have occurred in HDB flats; (c) how has the Ministry worked with HDB to tackle illegal housing issues; and (d) what are the plans to ensure proper housing and fire safety in worker housing and dormitories.

Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong: To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) what is the number and percentage of eligible CPF members who made withdrawals from age 55 in the last five years; (b) what was the average amount withdrawn; (c) how many withdrew to the limit; (d) how many were eligible to withdraw up to $5,000 only; and (e) how many withdrew the full $5,000.

Minister for Social and Family Development

Minister for Social and Family Development

*Mr Murali Pillai: To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development what approach will the Ministry take in respect of seniors who are eligible for but refuse to participate in the Lease Buyback Scheme that would have otherwise supplemented their payouts under CPF Life but in turn seek financial assistance from the Ministry's help schemes which may be available to them on the basis of their low household income.

*Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar: To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development (a) how many Day Activity Centres (DACs) are there currently; (b) how many young adults aged 18-21 years old are enrolled in the DACs currently; and (c) how many special needs trained educators or caregivers are there in the DACs.

Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development in each of the past five years, how many single unwed parents were at the point of the birth of their child (i) below 35 years old (ii) between 35 years old and 36 years old and (iii) 36 years old and above respectively.

Mr Seah Kian Peng: To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development when is the next review of the Public Assistance scheme.

Minister for Trade and Industry

Minister for Trade and Industry

*Mr Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry (a) what is the cause of the widespread electricity disruption that occurred on 18 September 2018; (b) how are our critical infrastructure protected against such disruptions; and (c) what is the impact of the liberalisation of the energy market on the reliability of electricity provision.

*Mr Liang Eng Hwa: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry (a) what is the root cause of the major disruption to power supply in Singapore on 18 September 2018; and (b) what are the follow-up actions and measures that will be put in place to minimize the risks of recurrence.

*Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry what caused the power failure on 18 September 2018 and how many homes were affected by the blackout.

*Ms Rahayu Mahzam: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry (a) what are the findings from the investigations by the Energy Market Authority on the disruption of power supply that occurred on 18 September 2018; (b) what are the safeguards that are in place to ensure that there are no power disruptions to critical services such as those in hospitals, lifts, street lights and traffic lights; and (c) what are the safeguards that can be put in place to prevent another similar occurrence of disruption of power supply in the future.

*Mr Gan Thiam Poh: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry whether the Ministry will introduce a law to require all prepayments collected by businesses in the sales of goods and services to be deposited into an escrow account that is free from encumbrances and creditors' claims and which account is strictly for use by the affected consumers for goods and services that have yet to be rendered or consumed.

*Ms Foo Mee Har: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry with liberalisation of the electricity market for the Jurong region since 1 April 2018 (a) how many eligible households have opted to switch from buying electricity from SP Group; and (b) what is the average cost savings experienced by these households who chose the alternative providers.

*Mr Desmond Choo: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry in view of Britain's membership of the EU lapsing in about six months, what is the impact on (i) trade between Singapore and the EU (ii) the Singapore-EU Free Trade Agreement and (iii) Singapore companies operating in Britain.

Ms Rahayu Mahzam: To ask the Minister for Trade and Industry (a) since the introduction of the Open Electricity Market in Jurong, what is the total number of residents who have made a switch to purchase their electricity from a retailer of their choice; (b) whether there is a poll or study done to gauge the level of awareness level of the new electricity retail options and, if so, what is the outcome; (c) whether there is a poll or study done to gauge the satisfaction level of customers who have switched to purchasing their electricity from a retailer and, if so, what is the outcome; and (d) whether there were any issues raised by residents who have switched to purchasing electricity from various retailers.

Minister for the Culture, Community and Youth

Minister for the Culture, Community and Youth

*Mr Png Eng Huat: To ask the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth in respect of the Auditor-General's Report for FY2017/18 (a) how much additional costs were hidden in the award of contracts to the overseas tenderer for the Mid-Autumn Festival 2016 and Chinese New Year 2017; (b) whether there were such similar hidden costs paid to this overseas tenderer from 2014 to 2016 and how much was it in total; (c) what independent investigations had been carried out to address the tell-tale signs that the reimbursement claims made by the People's Association (PA) officer for overseas purchases for use in Chingay Parade 2017 might not be authentic; and (d) whether any of the statutory auditors of PA in previous audits flagged out such lapses since 2013.

Minister for Defence

Minister for Defence

*Mr Leon Perera: To ask the Minister for Defence (a) whether the figure of 80% of applications approved for Term Financial Assistance (TFA) for NSFs refers only to the applications supported by commanders; and (b) if so, what percentage of applications by NSFs for TFA were not supported by their commanders in the past five years.

Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for Defence in each of the last 10 years (a) how many appeals for financial assistance have been received from parents who experienced difficulty putting up the bond amounts for their sons' exit permits; (b) how many parents have failed to put up the bond amount; (c) how many have defaulted on their bonds; and (d) what measures are available to assist parents who are unable to afford the full amount of the bonds.

Mr Chong Kee Hiong: To ask the Minister for Defence for a child born to a Singaporean parent and a parent whose country also implements compulsory military service (a) what measures are there to assist these children who may have to serve two stints of military service or national service; and (b) whether the Ministry will consider reviewing its policies to take into account time already spent serving compulsory military service in another country.

Minister for the Environment and Water Resources

Minister for the Environment and Water Resources

*Assoc Prof Daniel Goh Pei Siong: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources whether the Ministry has been conducting audits on social enterprises managing hawker centres to prevent the use of hidden fees and charges and what level of surplus of income is deemed acceptable for these social enterprises.

*Ms Foo Mee Har: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources what impact has the hike in water prices had on water conservation efforts and overall consumption patterns.

Er Dr Lee Bee Wah: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources in respect of funding support for initiatives to reduce plastic packaging (a) what is the current take-up rate of the 3R Fund and 3P Partnership Fund; and (b) how popular are these schemes among the food delivery and food and beverage industries.

Mr Seah Kian Peng: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources (a) which are the water bodies in Singapore that are open for fishing; and (b) whether there are plans to open more such water spots for fishing.

Ms Rahayu Mahzam: To ask the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources to date, what is the total number of commercial or retail buildings that provide e-waste recycling bins.