by Augustine Low
Have you heard of the Malaysian core? What about the Indonesian core? Or the Vietnamese core? There simply isn’t any talk of such a thing because it is a given, a birthright that needs no debate and discussion.
Only in this country do we keep talking about protecting a Singaporean core, even worse about restoring a lost Singaporean core.
Singapore was built on the backs of our forefathers. We grew up reciting the pledge with clenched fist. Our sons dutifully made it through National Service.
Yet we have become natural-born citizens who have to be assured that Singaporeans come first, that the long-neglected Singaporean core will be made good and whole once again.
In his parliamentary speech yesterday, West Coast GRC Member of Parliament Ang Wei Neng called for the setting-up of a National Human Resource Committee to nurture a Singaporean core of talent.
He recounted his experience at Changi Business Park before the COVID-19 outbreak, when for the first time he felt “like a foreigner in my own country”. He went on to question why there are so many Employment Pass, E-Pass and S-Pass holders in Singapore.
Also in Parliament yesterday, Minister of State for Manpower and Education Gan Siow Huang stressed that employers should view Singaporeans favourably when hiring and retain citizens over foreigners if retrenchment cannot be avoided.
For years, Singaporeans have been crying out loud but they were given 1,001 reasons why the foreign influx must continue unabated. Those who continued to complain were called racists and xenophobic.
It is only today that politicians from the People’s Action Party are saying the things the people have been saying for more than a decade.
It is only today that the ones who persisted with the vile policies start to say don’t worry, we will look after Singaporean workers first, we will have your backs no matter what.
Instead of jumping for joy at hearing that the Singaporean core will now be protected (or are they only paying lip service?), we should be asking how this travesty has been allowed to happen in the first place.
How on earth did natural-born Singaporeans get sidelined and squeezed out in our own backyard?