MPs direct attention to Government​’s key task

Dear Mdm Halimah,

I refer to the 18 Jan 2012 Straits Times report of your parliamentary comments on ministerial salary.

You said a government is only as good as the people that comprise it. In the same way, a nation is only as good as the people that comprise it. Can a nation with good government but lousy people be good?

You urged Singaporeans to look at how the government improved welfare over the years. But welfare improvement is to compensate for stagnated low wages. In the 17 Jan 2012 Straits Times article “Completing the wage revolution”, Mr Ho Kwong Ping explained an IPS study which showed that our construction workers earned one tenth of what our doctors earned compared to one third on average for countries like the USA, UK, Germany, Australia, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea. Instead of rejoicing over welfare improvement, why don’t we ask ourselves why our low wages are so low compared to other First World nations exposed to the same forces of globalisation that welfare supplementation is required?

You said the recent plan by the education ministry to help private school students pay for university education requires leaders with ‘vision and foresight’. But these students have been struggling for years. Shouldn’t ‘vision and foresight’ come before the problem first took hold instead of years after? The plan came soon after the general elections when the electorate expressed unhappiness at the lack of university education opportunities. Isn’t this a reaction to electorate pressure rather than ‘vision and foresight’? Finally, the plan was announced at the end of a two-day panel visit to Hong Kong. Is this ‘vision and foresight’ borrowed from Hong Kong? Do we call borrowed vision, ‘vision’? Do we call borrowed foresight, ‘foresight’?

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One Response to “MPs direct attention to Government​’s key task”

  1. Saycheese Says:

    They have the vision as they saw it in Hong Kong and the foresight is to copy the Hong Kong solution as they cannot come up with one?

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