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Time for Singaporeans to unite

It is ironic that while Singaporeans continue to recite our National Pledge as “one united people, regardless of race, language or religion” on one hand, why then are we still having so many “race-based” Self-Help Groups and policies that are restricting our effort toward being “One United People”?

We have race-based Self-Help Group for Chinese, Indian, Eurasian, and Malay, but not for others, as if these Singaporeans do not matter.

Every month, every working Singaporeans are expected to contribute a portion of their salary to support these groups, thus making this a national public policy.

Helping or restricting Malay Muslim?

For the Malays and Muslims, their contributions also go towards the building of mosques and religious education.

But why are Malay or Muslim Singaporeans treated so differently from the rest?

Beside a Malay President, they even have a special minister to be in charge to look after Muslim Affairs.

Questions are, will all these “helps” ended up hurting their individual self-worth, undermining their potentials, and creating “self-defeating” tendencies that might weaken them culturally and religiously?

Ambiguous & conflicting statements

Yet, the current government continues to advocate for Singapore to unite as “one people” so that “together”, we can aspire and build our Singaporean identity and a “stronger” future as a nation.

Isn’t the continued support of these race-based groups, privileges, and policies in conflict with our collective aspiration as a nation?

Are we to be politically correct by ignoring these systemic realities and pretend that all is well?

Uniquely confusing Singapore

Imagine a Chinese or Indian Muslim beneficiary that is in need of help.

Should the Chinese Muslim goes to CDAC or MENDAKI, or MUIS for help?

Should the Indian Muslim goes to SINDA or MENDAKI, or MUIS for help?

I have first hand experience in learning from Indian Muslims that while MUIS has no problem receiving their monthly contributions, they will redirect Indian Muslim to either SINDA or Indian Muslim charities such as United Indian Muslim Association (UIMA) for assistance.

But charities like UIMA did not receive any part of their monthly contributions and yet is expected to resolve the predicaments of the Indian Muslim community.

This begets the question – if MUIS or MENDAKI has no issue collecting the monthly contributions from Indian, Chinese, or other non-Malay Muslims, should they not be equally responsible for resolving the predicaments of these donors?

Are these groups & charities ready for an expected increase for help?

As more Singaporeans become homeless, unemployed, bankrupted, in debts or driven to despair by the endless situational hardships Singapore is facing, what can they expect out of these groups to help them in their predicaments?

The irony is that, despite these groups and many other related charities and programmes, why are there still so many homeless and hardship cases in Singapore?

If these groups and charities are only interested in fund-raising but not actively addressing the pressing needs of fellow Singaporeans or raising their concerns to the government, then we should be encouraging direct donation to those who are more active and start shutting down those that are inactive, irrelevant, or dormant.

It is sad to be witnessing so many kind-hearted Singaporeans who are actively using their time and resources to help fellow Singaporeans who are in need.

If so, shouldn’t we be supporting and funding them directly?

Got money, but no action

Trouble is, many of these inactive or dormant charities are flushed with donations that are rotting away in banks while their supposedly beneficiaries are suffering needlessly.

Isn’t it time for our government to rethink about a major overhaul of these redundant race-based groups and charities so that the money and assets donated can be put to better use?

Singapore needs to be active & decisive in caring for fellow Singaporeans

But if Singapore is indeed seeking a progressive policy to reinforced a more cohesive society, isn’t it time that our government integrate these groups into a single group to optimize the use of resources and donations?

Given the huge amount of fund and asset entrusted to them, why not consider the option in appointing professional Fund Managers to manage these funds and assets more effectively?

If structured as a form of Public Endowment Plan, it can even be used to supplement the Retirement Plan for those in need of help to reverse the rich-poor gap, regardless of race, language, or religion.

I do not know the total amount of money and assets that are currently entrusted to MUIS but if these are consolidated and structured to help the community, l will not be surprised should the poverty that is plaguing the Malay or Muslim community be eradicate within a generation.

Since we have the offices of a dedicated Malay President and a dedicated minister in charge of their affairs, shouldn’t they look into this suggestion and see how they can use this option to eradicate poverty in their community?

Point is, as the pandemic rages, aggravated by some poor decisions make by the Multi-Ministry Taskforce, many more Singaporeans will be driven to despair as their saving dry up, with debts, mortgages, and bills pilling up, while business owners find themselves drowning in the red.

As more bankruptcies are to be expected, can any patriotic Singaporean sits back and watch as Singapore becoming a nation of bankrupts, unemployed and helpless souls?

Truth is, Singapore can truly and effectively eradicate poverty across all races and be a truly “First World” economy within a generation if we can find good leaders to govern our country and put all those “hidden” resources to work for us.

If executed effectively, Singaporeans can even have a better standard of living than the Swiss – a promise that the PAP government has failed to deliver.

This is still a possibility, provided we act more decisively and support good leaders, regardless of the political divide as leadership is also one of our many “hidden” resources.

Question is, do we still believe that Singaporeans deserve better…

 

Joseph Nathan

 

* Article first appeared on the author’s Facebook page.

 

 

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READER COMMENTS BELOW

22 Responses to “Time for Singaporeans to unite”

  • Asd:

    I think my national pledge been binned long ago because it is a disgusting motel not a nation and sadly brain washed and forced to recite daily at school like a communist county err not country its a motel

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  • xoxo:

    Let this old sg uncle say this.
    The Social Cohesion we used to enjoy was an effort both by CITIZENS N GAHMEM whose public policies and policy actions aided the process to social harmony.
    Most grassrooters in the past were carefully selected for their Public spiritedness and willingness_desire to SERVE their neighbours.

    These days,public policies n actions have the tendency to cause SOCIAL INCOHESION in various ways.
    Also,grassrooters are mostly SELF-SERVING.

    The outcome is what we are witnessing in our disgruntled and divided nation.

    CITIZEN-CENTRIC POLICIES N POLICY
    ACTIONS ARE IMPERATIVE FOR SOCIAL COHESION ,like it or not.
    Thus,social incohesion is a direct consequence of governmental policies and policy actions as much as social cohesion benefitted from such good govt policies in the past,can any GOOD MP N GRASSROOTER DENY?

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  • help or assistance:

    //Questions are, will all these “helps” ended up hurting their individual self-worth, undermining their potentials, and creating “self-defeating” tendencies that might weaken them culturally and religiously?//

    aiyoh. why must be ‘trapped’ by the mentality that help or assistance translates into “self-defeating” tendencies leh ??

    you see hor, even people who may already be ok (succesful businesses) know how to make the right noise (call it lobby lar) to ask for further support also – they also do not mind the extra support (to expand further ???) even though some drive good cars and live in good condo / landed properties hor ??

    some able students (from rich families) also need ‘help’ in the form of scholarship hor to ‘motivate’ them even further (but this is termed as meritocracy hor) ??

    you see hor, the peasants down the value chain are ‘indoctrinated’ that whatever help they ask for is termed as ‘dependency mentality’ hor while support given to those already able at the top is called incentive / support to drive creativity / inventiveness or whatnot hor ???

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  • Free for Singaporeans:

    Straits Times: DIY Covid-19 test kits to be sold at some retail pharmacies from June 16

    The test kits should be given FOC to all Singaporean households. Government with Trillion $ reserves can afford to pay for it. Non-citizens should pay full price if they want the test kits.

    Singaporeans First. Always.

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  • Singaporeans R Free Rider:

    Ok.
    First, how do you define Singaporean?
    1. Singaporean with FT spouse
    2. Singaporean with FT spouse whose
    children hold pink and foreign IC

    Second, which group of Singaporeans you want
    to unite?

    1. Gong gong Singaporean united
    2. Lazy and free riders Singaporean united
    3. Unrealistic, gambling Singaporean united
    4. Hardworking and motivated Singaporean united
    5. Rich Singaporeans united
    6. Tiko Singaporeans united
    7. Pretend poor Singaporeans united
    8. Irresponsible, advantage taking Singaporeans united

    Think carefully than let me know ok.

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  • Singaporeans R Free Rider:

    Contine …
    Lastly,
    8. Pretend to help but real intention
    is to take advantage Singaporeans united.

    So who do you want to unite ?

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  • Not Rotting in Banks:

    No, no, the huge funds are not rotting in the banks. They are definitely channeled to very good investment opportunities. :) :) :( :{ :}

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  • Help Needy Singaporeans Fund:

    We should do away with race-based organisations which is VERY misleading! Probably it is the thingy that divides Singaporeans in spirit!

    No wonder till this day we are still grappling with racist issues!

    I suggest that a national fund to HELP THE NEEDY SINGAPOREANS REGARDLESS OF RACE! We have CPF to fund our retirement needs. We can have a HNSF whereby the government & any organisation & even caring philanthropists regardless of race etc can channel their monetary givings via the HNSF to help the NEEDY so that nobody (no one) will be left behind!

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  • You, very good:

    Your comment is very very good!

    help or assistance:
    //Questions are, will all these “helps” ended up hurting their individual self-worth, undermining their potentials, and creating “self-defeating” tendencies that might weaken them culturally and religiously?//

    aiyoh. why must be ‘trapped’ by the mentality that help or assistance translates into “self-defeating” tendencies leh ??

    you see hor, even people who may already be ok (succesful businesses) know how to make the right noise (call it lobby lar) to ask for further support also – they also do not mind the extra support (to expand further ???) even though some drive good cars and live in good condo / landed properties hor ??

    some able students (from rich families) also need ‘help’ in the form of scholarship hor to ‘motivate’ them even further (but this is termed as meritocracy hor) ??

    you see hor, the peasants down the value chain are ‘indoctrinated’ that whatever help they ask for is termed as ‘dependency mentality’ hor while support given to those already able at the top is called incentive / support to drive creativity / inventiveness or whatnot hor ???

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  • liew mun leong must be jailed:

    racism is rife in pap island all due to pap racists ruling.

    pap says pap island needed a malay president and proceeded to appoint an INDIAN one. in this one move, pap has made three lies. 1st lie is malay president is needed when it is not. 2nd lie is letting an INDIAN to masquerade as a malay. 3rd lie is there is nothing racist about needing a malay president and appointing an INDIAN one.

    pap even says pap island is not ready for a non Chinese prime minister when what pap is actually lying about is that no Chinese will vote for a malay or an INDIAN prime minister. such a blatant lie by pap because we are Chinese and we vote by political party never by race, meaning as long as the person is from PSP WP we vote as prime minister regardless of the person’s race.

    one more thing. we believe Singapore, not pap island, is now ready for a female prime minister. Ms Hazel Poa or Ms Sylvia Lim will make a very decent and capable prime minister for Singapore.

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  • liew mun leong must be jailed:

    the current pap appointed president is an INDIAN even though pap lied that she is a malay.

    she is an INDIAN.

    1, her IC says INDIAN.
    2, her papa is INDIAN.
    3, when she approached mendaki, mendaki classified her as INDIAN.
    4, she herself lamented about her INDIANness.

    by a tweak of lying hand, pap confused a malay with a muslim, implying because the INDIAN woman is a muslim, she is a malay.

    but what did mendaki say? mendaki says she is INDIAN.

    so we ask. if esteemed Dr Tan CB is a muslim, he could be president too since he is a malay due to his religion being muslim.

    so obviously cannot right? hahaha. pap, depending on time of day, can say can and can say cannot. at its whim and fancy.

    one minute chicken. one minute feather. and pap says they mean the same thing.

    we don’t agree. we don’t support. so we vote WP PSP but not pap.

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  • Help needed:

    We have a great divide.
    Many poor and needy are having a hard time surviving during this Covid crisis.
    Time to relook at our social support net Policy.It is not working .
    More need to be done fast and urgent.
    Maybe should replace the Ministry responsible…starting with Comcare.

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  • Disappointed:

    For many “help the needy” funds, the biggest beneficiaries are not the needy. For example, needies get $2 each but the kind-hearted manager gets $600k, or a gold-tap allowance.

    There should be a cap on manager salary, say, 10 times what the smallest beneficiary gets.

    It is a sick joke for $50,000 a month CEO to distribute $10 a month to beneficiaries. In Singapore, what can the needy do with $10 a month? Real case. Not made up fake example.

    Help Needy Singaporeans Fund:
    We should do away with race-based organisations which is VERY misleading! Probably it is the thingy that divides Singaporeans in spirit!

    No wonder till this day we are still grappling with racist issues!

    I suggest that a national fund to HELP THE NEEDY SINGAPOREANS REGARDLESS OF RACE! We have CPF to fund our retirement needs. We can have a HNSF whereby the government & any organisation & even caring philanthropists regardless of race etc can channel their monetary givings via the HNSF to help the NEEDY so that nobody (no one) will be left behind!

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  • kaji:

    Yeah

    Funds to the different self-help group also differ. When I taught at Mendaki, the classroom are non-airconditioned and chalk board.

    When I taught at CDAC, the classrooms are air-conditioned with CCTVs.

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  • Temusik Patriot:

    Joe the dead bastard created all these divide n rule plus killing his people’s unborn to fulfill his Evil agenda of an elite society

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  • Singaporeans R Free Riders:

    Help Needy Singaporeans Fund:
    We should do away with race-based organisations which is VERY misleading! Probably it is the thingy that divides Singaporeans in spirit!

    No wonder till this day we are still grappling with racist issues!

    I suggest that a national fund to HELP THE NEEDY SINGAPOREANS REGARDLESS OF RACE! We have CPF to fund our retirement needs. We can have a HNSF whereby the government & any organisation & even caring philanthropists regardless of race etc can channel their monetary givings via the HNSF to help the NEEDY so that nobody (no one) will be left behind!

    Ok.. do away with race.
    So, how do you defines the Singaporean identity?
    1. local born Singaporean with local born Singaporean spouse
    2. naturalized (no NS) Singaporean with local born Singaporean spouse
    3. Singaporean with FT spouse
    4. Singaporean with FT spouse whose children hold pink and foreign IC

    Second, how do you define needy ?
    1. Spend all money on women/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    2. Spend all money on liquor/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    3. Spend all money on gambling/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    4. Lazy to work and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    5. Habitual stealing and conning Singaporean who never want to work but steal and con people ?
    4. Individual income below SGD1000?
    5. Household income below SGD1000?

    Even homeless people also got different type, drug addicts, rapists, criminals etc.

    So, pray tell how do you define Singaporean identity and needy?
    And, tell where you get the money to fund the needy ?
    Wait for money to drop from the sky like fish drop from the sky in a certain book ?

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  • Singaporeans R Free Riders:

    continue:
    I had been helping needy Singaporeans for years now and seen through the real, the fake and the cheating.

    So who here want to be gong gong like carrot head Gilbert Goh who never check and check and verify and got conned big time.

    Go ask Gilbert Goh. He had been conned by many lazy and unmotivated Singaporeans.
    Facts:
    http://theindependent.sg/activist-files-police-report-against-woman-who-said-she-lied-about-being-evicted-by-hdb-to-seek-donations/

    GE2024.PAP.Guarantee.Win.HuatAgain

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  • Singaporeans R Free Riders:

    Hahaha… nobody can answer my questions.

    Obviously opposition had no solutions except complain and shoot off their mouth only.

    When you ask them to really work on it, their ball shrink and go silent immediately….

    MM Goh is right. We must always ask the Opposition this question:
    What can Opposition do for me?

    And all opposition will go silent just like above.

    GE2024.PAP.Guarantee.Win.HuatAgain

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  • Pee And Poo:

    “Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong has sounded a warning that Cabinet ministers are not paid enough and that down the road, Singapore will be confronted with the problem of getting competent people to join the Government.”

    These ministers are not NEEDY!

    What kind of logic? Competence=high pay?
    So can we accept the excuse that the 4G ministers are not competent because they are not paid enough?
    Must be “Pee And Poo” logic!

    CAN YOU DEFINE WHAT IS NEEDY?
    CAN WE SAY THOSE TRUE BLUE SINGAPOREANS LIVING BELOW SUBSISTENCE LEVEL ARE NEEDY & NEED HELP.

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  • Singaporeans R Free Riders:

    Singaporeans R Free Riders: Ok.. do away with race.
    So, how do you defines the Singaporean identity?
    1. local born Singaporean with local born Singaporean spouse
    2. naturalized (no NS) Singaporean with local born Singaporean spouse
    3. Singaporean with FT spouse
    4. Singaporean with FT spouse whose children hold pink and foreign IC

    Second, how do you define needy ?
    1. Spend all money on women/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    2. Spend all money on liquor/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    3. Spend all money on gambling/cigarette and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    4. Lazy to work and then act pitiful and come to you for assistance.
    5. Habitual stealing and conning Singaporean who never want to work but steal and con people ?
    4. Individual income below SGD1000?
    5. Household income below SGD1000?

    Even homeless people also got different type, drug addicts, rapists, criminals etc.

    So, pray tell how do you define Singaporean identity and needy?
    And, tell where you get the money to fund the needy ?
    Wait for money to drop from the sky like fish drop from the sky in a certain book ?

    No Opposition dare to answer ….??????

    That settle it… Opposition are nothing but mere lazy and unmotivated whiners who are out to chop (scam/con) carrot head like Gilbert Goh

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  • Auntie Uncle Gong Gong:

    I have one more category.

    Rude toad Singaporeans, FTs and elderlies with no upbringing.

    Send them to concentration camp and gas them with their own gas. Then they sure wake up their idea.

    Singaporeans R Free Rider:
    Ok.
    First, how do you define Singaporean?
    1. Singaporean with FT spouse
    2. Singaporean with FT spouse whose
    children hold pink and foreign IC

    Second, which group of Singaporeans you want
    to unite?

    1. Gong gong Singaporean united
    2. Lazy and free riders Singaporean united
    3. Unrealistic, gambling Singaporean united
    4. Hardworking and motivated Singaporean united
    5. Rich Singaporeans united
    6. Tiko Singaporeans united
    7. Pretend poor Singaporeans united
    8. Irresponsible, advantage taking Singaporeans united

    Think carefully than let me know ok.

    GD Star Rating
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  • Singaporeans R Free Riders:

    Auntie Uncle Gong Gong:
    I have one more category.

    Rude toad Singaporeans, FTs and elderlies with no upbringing.

    Send them to concentration camp and gas them with their own gas. Then they sure wake up their idea.

    Thanks for the reminder.
    Yes, I will add it to my list.
    Please can you help share my list to all Opposition supporters and challenge Opposition supporters to answer ?

    Just Ask Opposition for solution. So, OPpie what is your solution ?

    And all oppositions will go silent.
    Now where is Jamus Lim?
    Where is Nicole Seah ?

    Opposition all wayang only to get the big pay check only.

    GE2024.PAP.Guarantee.Win.HuatAgain
    Majullah $PAP$ $PAP$ Huat$ Huat$ Huat$

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