SPF should build strong community partnerships in cyberspace

By Ravi Philemon

The Online Citizen (TOC) sent in the following opinion to The Straits Times (ST) Forum on 30 March 2010. At the time of putting this up on TOC, ST had not responded if they would put this up in their papers. So, we publish our opinion in full here.

On March 29, I emailed the Commissioner of the Singapore Police Force (SPF), CP Ng Joo Hee in my capacity as the Joint-Chief Editor of The Online Citizen, enquiring about the report on Bangkok Post titled, “Candy’s special customers: the bribe-taking, sex hungry policemen”.

In the email, I enquired if the report in Bangkok Post was true and if true, had the SPF identified these rogue officers and what action(s) have been taken against them.

On March 30, I received a reply from Mr Paul Tan, the Quality Service Manager of SPF.  In his email reply Mr Tan said that my enquiry was receiving due attention and that SPF will reply me in due course.

I was relieved to read in ST on 31 March, that responding to questions from The Straits Times, SPF confirmed that the officers mentioned in the article were not members of SPF and that the allegations by Bangkok Post against the officers of SPF are unsubstantiated.

Read more

Minister and top management not to blame – PM Lee

Videos of PM Lee’s speech below.

“I am satisfied that the Ministry has taken the correct remedial and disciplinary action, and that the Minister and top management were not to blamed (sic) for what has happened.”

“We must admit our mistakes openly and honestly, put them right, and act against those who have been culpable. But the last thing we need is a witch-hunt which would damage and demoralise our intelligence and security agencies.”

PM Lee Hsien Loong, Straits Times, April 22


The Director of the Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) response to media queries:

“AGC has considered the investigation papers and concluded that there is no basis to lay criminal charges under the Penal Code against any particular individual.”


Read more

Is the Singaporean population shrinking? – Part 1

By Leong Sze Hian

To what extent has our liberal foreign labour and citizenship policies affected Singaporeans’ rights with reference to Article 22 and 25 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights ?

Is the Singaporean population shrinking because of our liberal foreign labour and residency policies?

The answer is probably nobody knows, or maybe just a few may know. Well, perhaps we can try to make a calculated guess…

I refer to media reports about the OCBC survey released on 12 December that 1 out of 50 Singaporeans (2 % of the population) aspire to migrate, and the article “Facts on the ground more eloquent than statistics: Ngiam” (Today, Dec 10).

Read more

Uniquely Singapore: Charity – F1 or F9? Helping the poor?

By Leong Sze Hian

After watching the Cancer Charity Show, my friend’s sister, a 50 plus housewife, was so depressed, that she jumped from the 10th floor of her HDB flat, the day after the show.

As I watched elderly sick Singaporeans pleading during the show, that they have no money for medical treatment, medicine, and one lady who said that she did not even have 10 cents, the first thought that came into my mind, was isn’t there Medifund to help those who cannot pay for medical fees and Comcare to help the poor ?

Since the reason given for raising the GST, was to help the poor, and the hike has already been implemented on 1 July, why do we keep hearing of pleas for help from the sick and the needy ?

Read more

Extravagant help for the needy?

By Leong Sze Hian

The ChannelNewsAsia report “50 needy households receive free electrical appliances” (29 August) (link) said that:

“Needy residents in the South West District received various free electrical appliances on Wednesday due to an initiative by the South West Community Development Council and appliance manufacturer Akira.

Akira has donated S$120,000 worth of appliances for 50 low-income households.

A set for each household includes a kettle, stove, rice cooker, radio and cordless phone.

Mayor of the South West District, Dr Amy Khor, was on hand to give the recipients a few tips on using the appliances”.

Dividing $120,000 by 50 equals $2,400. Are these top-end very expensive appliances? A kettle, stove, rice cooker, radio and cordless phone cost $2,400?

Read more