SDP: Time to reinstate workers’ rights

November 28, 2012 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Singapore Democratic Party 

Singapore Democrats (link)
28 November 2012

Singapore’s workers have been exploited for far too long. Since the detention of opposition and trade union leaders like Lim Chin Siong and the eradication of free trade unions together with the restructuring of the employment laws in the 1960s, the PAP has, together with Western neoliberals, systematically dismantled the legitimate rights of the Singaporean worker.

While we have the highest number of millionaires per capita making us the richest country in the world, nearly 5 percent of our workers are paid $500 a month. Their wages have not risen in the last 10 years. The result is an enormous income inequality, the highest in the industrialised world.

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Time for govt to show leadership, or admit its incompetence

November 28, 2012 by · 10 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
28 November 2012

The strike by PRC bus drivers from SMRT continued on Tuesday, with over 60 no-shows. SMRT bus services were again affected. I would like to express my sympathy for the inconvenience and potential loss of income experienced by commuters. I also hope that no student taking the Cambridge A Level examinations were affected.

Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin has said that the no-show by the bus drivers constitutes an “illegal strike”. He said the government views this seriously and has zero tolerance for this. Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo also urged employers and employees to handle grievances in a proper manner. (CNA, 27 Nov)

SMRT has lodged a police report for further investigation into possible breaches of the law. At the same time, the company is conducting its own investigations on whether terms of employment have been breached. (TODAY Online, 27 Nov)

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PRC bus drivers strike: Get to the heart of the matter

November 27, 2012 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
27 November 2012

On Monday morning, slightly over 100 PRC bus drivers went on strike. They were dissatisfied over recent pay increases that benefited other bus drivers more.

According to Shin Min Daily News, Malaysian bus drivers received a $275 increment and a month’s bonus, while Chinese nationals received only a $75 increment without any bonus.

A report from LianHe ReBao (联合早报) also said that the PRC drivers were unhappy over the lack of overtime pay, as well as poor living conditions at the hostel.

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PM Lee’s “red vs blue path” analogy flawed on many levels

November 25, 2012 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
25 November 2012

On 24 Nov, PM Lee Hsien Loong said that Singapore cannot afford to go down the path of countries like the United States, where most states clearly belong to either the Democrat or Republican camp, and the victorious political party has to chose whose interests to represent. (TODAY Online, 24 Nov)

“If Singapore had a blue constituency and a red constituency, I think Singapore will be in trouble,” Mr Lee told PAP activists at a morning seminar.

He also said: “We have tried to make sure that all our constituencies are about the same colour — because we want all the constituencies to share the same interests. Then we can think together and when you represent Singapore, you represent the whole of Singapore.”

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Dr Chee Soon Juan’s bankruptcy finally annulled

November 21, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
21 November 2012

Dr Chee Soon Juan, leader of the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP), has had his bankruptcy annulled.

He was previously sued by Mr Lee Kuan Yew and Mr Goh Chok Tong for defamation in 2001 and subsequently ordered to pay $500,000 in damages. He was made a bankrupt in 2006.

The Official Assignee (OA) wrote to Dr Chee on 14 November 2012 stating that the proposal (of $30,000) that Dr Chee made to his creditors towards the settlement of his debts was successful, and that he would be issued with a Certificate of Annulment shortly.

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Singapore in 2022: Look at Plums to Quench the Thirst

November 19, 2012 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Dr Wong Wee Nam 

By Dr Wong Wee Nam
19 November 2012

Imagine that a ruling party has just suffered what it considers a huge setback in a General Election. Its loss includes two ministers, a mayor and a potential minister. Suddenly it dawns on the party that the people are really very anger and ready to inflict more political damage come the next time round.

Initially, it tries some public relations exercises, but the anger continues. It is reflected in the Presidential Election where the favoured candidate wins by a minority vote with a very slim margin.

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Housing choices alone do not ensure enough CPF for retirement

November 15, 2012 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
15 November 2012

Contrary to a flawed survey commissioned by the Ministry of Manpower, housing choices alone will not ensure that Singaporeans have enough CPF savings for retirement.

Firstly, the survey, which was performed by two academics, assumed that housing prices would remain relatively stable. The PAP government so far has shown neither the political will nor the motivation to ensure that this is achieved. There remains a huge demand-supply imbalance that is forcing HDB prices upwards.

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SDP responds to Lee Kuan Yew on housing

November 9, 2012 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Singapore Democratic Party 

Singapore Democrats (link)
07 November 2012

Mr Lee Kuan Yew said on Sunday that public housing in Singapore “has to keep up with the rising aspirations of Singaporeans.” On this point, he is absolutely right.

Unfortunately, the skyrocketing prices have left an entire generation of younger Singaporeans see their aspirations go up in smoke. This is why the SDP idea of NOM flats would better meet the aspirations of the people.

NOM flats are sold at cost and are a fraction compared to the prices currently sold by the HDB.

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Get the basics of public housing right

November 6, 2012 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Current Affairs and Politics 

Written by Ng E-Jay
06 November 2012

Former Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said public housing has to keep up with the rising aspirations of Singaporeans and that the facilities and design of older estates should also not fall behind newer ones. (CNA, 05 Nov)

We must get the basics right first. Public housing, first and foremost, must be affordable to young couples as well as older singles. To this end, the SDP has called for a drastic revamp of the housing system to allow this group to purchase flats at their cost price of construction in a specialized non-open market.

The current system of allowing home prices to escalate well beyond the average level of affordability of Singaporeans and then saddling young families with huge mortgage debt that last for up to 30 years, is simply not acceptable.

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SDP proposes non-open market flats in housing policy

November 5, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Singapore Democratic Party 

Singapore Democrats (link)
05 November 2012

The SDP has proposed a new Non-Open Market, or NOM, scheme in public housing to help reduce prices of HDB flats. Under the scheme a segment of new HDB flats will be priced at cost minus the land “cost” that is currently factored into HDB prices.

As a result, prices of flats will be substantially lower, ranging from $70,000 for 2-room flats to $240,000 for 5-room flats.

As stated, the prices reflect only the cost of building a flat (that is, administrative, material, labour costs only).

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