Any hope the Government still harboured of the electorate accepting the "6.9 million"Population White Paper may have just gone up in flames. One must not underestimate the shock to the Singaporean psyche in seeing images of burning police vehicles, crowds attacking ambulances and rioting masses; for Singaporeans born post-independence, these things just do not happen in Singapore. They see them on the TV, or the internet, or the papers -- but not in their own backyard.
Amid calls for the meting out of tough punishment on those involved in the Little India riot (“Tough action needed” by Mr Christopher Chong and “Wake-up call for S’pore” by Mr Lawrence Loh Kiah Muan; both on Forum Online, Tuesday), it is easy to forget how similar the foreign workers are to our forefathers who came to Singapore to make a living. Indeed, it is too easy to forget that they are “human beings who deserve to be treated with dignity” (“Remind foreign workers of tough laws here” by Mr Francis Chowdhurie; Forum Online, Tuesday). The media has been highlighting the perspectives of the authorities and Singaporeans on the situation.
This is in reference to articles, specifically this (Do read it, if you haven’t done so) but I will also try to use others too. Those are written about the recent riots in Singapore. Where many people have illustrated that foreigners in Singapore should are not the same as Singaporeans themselves. I will highlight the key fallacies in arguments proposed by individuals. Such as “Ok so at a very technical/ genetic level, they are humans. But I am not talking technically here. My point is they are not the ‘same kind’ of humans we are” (SG Bangla, 2013).
On top of the impending fare hike for trains, SMRT has also announced that it will be increasing the fares of taxis starting from Monday next week. The flagdown fare of all SMRT Chevrolet Epica cabs will increase to $3.60. On top of this, the distance and waiting fares for a number of other cab models will increase. The distance fares are set to increase for Mercedes-Benz, London, Hyundai Starex and SSangyong Rodius cars. These cabs will now charge 30c per 400m travelled for shorter trips and 30c for every 45 seconds of waiting time.
Early this morning (Dec 12), the body of a woman was found in Whampoa River near Blk 110 McNair Road. Police were alerted to the body at around 7:33am and SCDF officers also responded to calls about the body in the canal. Paramedics on site had confirmed that the woman was dead at 8:28am. It is reported that the woman was only half clothed in a pair of black pants and no top.
The feeling is not one of outright xenophobia, yet Singaporeans face another tinge of déjà vu from the Ma Chi incident in light of the riots which happened last Sunday. Many political leaders have urged us to be calm and refrain from xenophobia which I agree entirely as someone having many respectable foreign friends. Nevertheless, the incident aptly reflects the fact that the PAP’s model is not sustainable and the fact that we have been backstabbed by the men in white.
35 year old Ng Eng Huat was ordered to undergo 2 years of treatment after being caught stealing a woman’s bra from her flat while she was sleeping. Ng had peered into the bedroom of a 25 year old woman’s flat in Bishan in July at around midnight and found her sleeping. Looking around the room, he saw a bra of hers which was draped over a chair in the room. Ng had become aroused by the sight and reached in and stole the bra but was caught by one of the woman’s neighbours and reported on.
The Little India riot of 8 December 2013 highlights the ethnic divide in the island-nation of Singapore. As reported earlier, a mob of angry men of South Asian decent became violent following a fatal bus collision that killed a 33-year-old construction worker. The man has been identified as Sakthivel Kumarvelu, an Indian national. According to eyewitness accounts reported by local media, the man may have been intoxicated and belligerent as he tried to board the bus, which ran him over shortly after. Unconfirmed reports indicate that the police officers who arrived on the scene before the ambulance behaved in an unseemly manner, fueling the rage.
Negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership have been pushed to 2014 as a round of negotiations in Singapore failed. The agreement which has faced some controversy due to the highly secretive nature of the negotiations as well as several damming leaks about spying allegations is still to push ahead in 2014. The talks include the 12 countries Australia, the US, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Peru, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, and Singapore but could potentially include more in the future.