Minister Ong Ye Kung extends Pongal greetings with a throwback selfie – while some netizens remind him to fix the potholes

Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung on Thursday (15 January) extended Pongal greetings to the Tamil community in Singapore with a throwback photo of him and a calf.

Pongal is a four-day-long traditional Indian harvest festival that mostly celebrated in the month of Thai in the Tamil calendar, which generally falls on 14 January.

In a Facebook post yesterday, Mr Ong noted how the celebration is going virtual this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“During past years, we had physical celebrations that even included cows which our residents looked forward to. I was still able to take part in the Pongal making ritual, which is a very important part of Pongal celebrations,” the Minister wrote.

“This year, we will have to go virtual. Nevertheless, Happy Pongal to all residents who celebrate it!” he added.

Many netizens responded to his post with Pongal greetings in the comment section.

However, some, in spite of the festivities, were quick to remind the Minister to fix the potholes that have been appearing on the city-state’s roads recently.

One netizen commented that the potholes would endanger road users, especially bike riders during rainy days.

“I guess everyone wishes to reach home safely to celebrate this occasion. Thanks in advance,” said the netizen.

Another netizen, who claimed to be “a new rider on the road”, said the potholes issue was a “really 3rd world standard” and appealed to the Minister to fix them.

“I hate to think I’ll have or any rider to have an accident because of a pothole. Thank you for your consideration. I’m sure you’ll fix it ASAP,” he wrote.

One netizen stressed that the potholes issue is putting riders’ safety at risk.

Their comments were made in relation to the series of photos of potholes surfaced on Complaint Singapore Facebook group earlier today, which called the attention of authorities to the matter.

Mothership reported that some of the potholes have since been patched up by the authorities, while the Land Transport Authority (LTA) aims to fix them within 24 hours.


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