Man apologises to CPF Board and decides to get help from loved ones for child’s school fees

Last Wed (26 Jun), a 60-year-old elderly man Lim Koh Leong wrote on his Facebook page that despite having more than enough money in his CPF account to cover his daughter’s education fees, he was not allowed by the CPF Board to use a portion of the funds for his daughter’s education.

His Facebook post immediately went viral in couple of days, now garnering at least more than 1,400 comments.

Mr Lim revealed that he currently has more than $70,000 in his CPF account and he only needs $15,000 for his daughter’s school fees.

“Currently I’m already 60 years old, with an unstable job, how am I supposed to get the needed cash for my daughter’s education?!” he asked.

At the CPF office, he told the staff, “The money in my CPF is my hard earned money, I only need to use a part of it to pay for my daughter’s school fees which is $15,000, my CPF has more than enough inside to pay for my daughter’s school fees. Is there another way to do this?”

Apparently, according to Mr Lim, the staff from CPF Board told him abruptly, “Can apply, the chance of it is zero.”

Mr Lim continued, “I felt cheated, humiliated, angry. So many years of hard work, sweat and tears to earn the money and it’s inside CPF. It is supposed to be my money. I’m in need of it and yet, I cannot take my own money to help pay my daughter’s school fees.”

“Please share this post to help,” he added. “As a father, I want to help my daughter… Do I really have to resort to borrowing money and loans when I got my money in my CPF? Should I be forced to stop my daughter’s education?”

“Believe that this does not happen to just me. This kind of government… treating our own Singaporeans like this, can I still have trust and faith in them? Even for just my child’s school fees. What should I do? What can I do?” he asked.

CPF Board replies

Yesterday (29 Jun), CPF Board replied on its Facebook page. It said that Mr Lim did not have sufficient money in his CPF account for “basic retirement”. Hence, allowing him to use his CPF money for his daughter’s education is “not appropriate”.

CPF advised Mr Lim that a “better approach” is to “find other ways” to finance his daughter’s school fees. “We have spoken to him and are discussing alternative options,” it added.

CPF Board also said that after reviewing its video recording, it is “satisfied that our staff had served Mr Lim calmly and professionally”.

It added that Mr Lim had, in fact, apologised presumably for his post on 26 Jun. “Mr Lim explained he was upset and offered his apology which our staff has accepted,” CPF Board said.

Mr Lim thanks everyone for their support

Mr Lim also wrote another post on his Facebook page yesterday to update everyone that his daughter’s school fees have been settled by his own family members.

“Dear friends, my daughter’s tuition for education has been properly solved by my loved ones. Thank you very much for your concern and support,” Mr Lim wrote.

“In just a few days, I’ve undergone a lot of pressure and I am worried about my daughter’s future. I believe that there should be a lot of people who have the same problems as me. I hope they have better luck than me.”

He was especially touched by the thousands of Singaporeans who have shown their support.

“What touched me the most was that in such a small country under the pressure of being busy and living our own lives, I did not expect thousands of warmhearted people. They were discussing things about how my to solve daughter’s tuition, giving me advice and comforting me. Helping me check the information and so on,” he said.

“All the things you have done for me, I’m grateful, moved, I really don’t know how to thank you, I wish to make friends with all of you… There are also many people who even call me and send me a text message, willing to fork out their own money. Thank you very much. Your kindness is in my heart.”

“Once again, let me say: Thank you for your help and support, thank you! Thank you!” Mr Lim thanked everyone profusely.