The Workers’ Party (WP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Sengkang GRC Jamus Lim came across a family represented by three generations during one of his house visits in Anchorvale on Thursday (3 Dec).
Mr Lim had a long conversation with the Wong family on a wide range of topics, including his Sengkang team’s campaign, life as a parliamentarian, Singapore’s political and economic prospects, and their views on national policies.
“I always find such discussions fascinating, because they vividly display the very disparate interests that different generations carry,” he wrote on his Facebook on Friday (4 Dec).
However, one topic that appears to “cut across generations” during their conversation is the matter of Central Provident Fund (CPF) savings.
Mr Lim noted that for the older generation, there are questions about whether existing limits for Medisave utilisation are adequate, especially in light of rising medical costs.
“With CPF often tapped on to purchase flats, those still in the workforce increasingly worry about retirement adequacy, especially as rising house prices means that a larger share of incomes are now devoted just to securing a roof over their heads, rather than contributing toward retirement,” he added.
As for the youngest generation, Mr Lim argued that their parents’ CPF is sometimes tapped on to help with school fees, which would further chip away at their parents’ retirement pot.
He went on to say that the WP has advanced a number of suggestions related to CPF usage in its manifesto.
According to the Sengkang MP, these include easier withdrawal of excess balances during times of crisis, lowering the payout eligibility age to 60, allowing easier extended-family transfer of CPF balances, and widening Medisave uses for the elderly.
Mr Lim went on to express how important interacting with residents is to him.
“There are days when, like all humans, I feel tired or discouraged about political service. But I always find strength – and a surprising ability to recharge – when I return to grassroots work, and remind myself of the lives I am trying to help in what we do,” he remarked.