President’s Address: Regurgitating only the existing priorities

TOC Current Affairs Desk

When the session of the 11th parliament was prorogued on 13 April 2009, at the end of the day’s sitting, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that the government has regularly prorogued Parliament midway through the term. This allows the government, when it reopens Parliament, to set out new priorities for the rest of the term of the government. 


The second session of parliament was convened yesterday, with high anticipation of the President’s Address. He was to announce the priorities, policies and programmes of the government for the remainder of its current term of office.  The President’s Address, “Building Our Future Singapore in an Uncertain World” though, was a huge disappointment.  It spelled out no new programme/policies, neither did it set any new priority for the reconvened parliament. 

In his Address, the President rightly spoke about the education improvements that have occurred over the last few years. The recent change of moving away from primary 1 and 2 examinations is encouraging. It opens a new chapter for a new vibrant learning culture in schools. Of course, this does not mean that we have moved away from our overtly strong emphasis on academics, but it signifies some progression. 

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Civil service is “politically impartial”

Civil servants under the constitution hold their allegiance to the president. The symbolism that is attached to that is we actually serve at the pleasure of a politically neutral institution. It is one of the values of the civil service that we are politically impartial. Deputy Principal Senior State Counsel from the Attorney-General’s Chambers, Owi … Read more