[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Monday, October 29, 2007

[A poem for muggers]
I hate to go to school on a Monday.
I just need some more sleep.

I dread to attend classes on Tuesday.
I hate to drag my feet.

I wish to laze on my bed on a Wednesday.
Give me a break, it's mid week!

I wish I can sleep more on a Thursday.
Or have some time to read.

I want to let my hair down on Friday.
But alas, I can't, that's sick.

I hope I can stay home on Saturday.
There are many things to do you freak.

I hate mugging on a Sunday.
But to settle deadlines I have to meet.

Singapore Mugger University,
where the muggers click.

What is the SMU Culture? Is it all about books?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

[Beijing and Tokyo]
1. I am posting this blog from Tokyo after meeting Chinese FM Yang Jiechi yesterday and Japanese FM Masahiko Koumura today. My purpose was to consult them informally on the situation in Myanmar. I'll do the same with Indian FM Pranab Mukherjee next month before the ASEAN and East Asian Summits.

2. It is important for ASEAN, China, Japan and India to work together. Together, we can create a more favourable external environment for national reconciliation in Myanmar. Living here, we have a strong interest in maintaining stability in the region. If Myanmar dissolves into chaos, we will be adversely affected. Of course it is the Myanmar people who will suffer the most.

3. The Myanmar Government has made some efforts recently to improve the situation. The meeting between Labour Minister Gen Aung Kyi and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi two days ago was a start. UN Special Envoy Ibrahim Gambari will be returning to Myanmar in early November to play the role of mediator. His role may prove decisive. He has our full support. The dialogue must be a genuine one, not for show. The progress made cannot only be to stave off international pressure during the Summit meetings. Or else, as Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said, we have a time bomb ticking away.

4. In the end, it is the people of Myanmar who must settle their own future. The military (the Tatmadaw) must be part of the solution. Aung San Suu Kyi and the National League for Democracy must also be part of it. So too the many ethnic groups who make up the country including Christians and Muslims. As family members and friends, we can extend a helping hand and cheer them on.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

Thursday, October 25, 2007

[Reservoir Community]
1. Bedok Reservoir came under Aljunied GRC from the 1997 General Elections. I have been honoured to serve residents living in the area as Member of Parliament since then, for about a decade now.

2. When I was in Secondary Two in 1968, a group of us from SJI did a class project on the reclamation of East Coast Park. I remember seeing Bedok Reservoir being dug then. The excavated earth was transported by conveyor belts snaking all the way to the sea where 3 and 4 SIR are today. The reservoir was designed to keep people away with steep sides, no public access to the water's edge and a big monsoon canal on one side. The reason was obvious: the water impounded was our drinking water and the less pollution, the better. Once it was clear that membrane technology (ultra-filtration and reverse osmosis) allowed us to purify water economically, PUB's policy on public use of our water reservoirs was progressively relaxed. Instead of discouraging the use of Bedok Reservoir, we are now encouraging it. The result is a complete transformation of the whole area with the water body becoming a focal point of activity.

3. An elaborate plan is now being implemented in phases to introduce water sports (fishing, canoeing, dragon-boating, sailing, wake-boarding etc) and to develop the parkland around it for leisure, sports and culture. The existing commercial area will be spruced up and reoriented towards the water. It will be renamed 'Reservoir Village'.

4. It is not difficult to build the physical facilities once we have the budget. Building a community around the reservoir, however, takes time and effort. We need residents and students to feel a sense of ownership and responsibility. The activities in the water must be safe and properly regulated. We must keep the water and the surrounding areas clean. Public properties should be looked after including the new adventure course, boat houses, toilets, park furniture, boardwalks, shelters and sculptures.

5. All the housing estates in the vicinity have either been upgraded or soon will be. New condos are sprouting up. Bedok Reservoir has improved much in recent years and is becoming quite an attractive habitat for those who live, study or work there. One day, an MRT station may be built. Real estate in the vicinity is already going up in value.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

Monday, October 22, 2007

Ever felt how it is like to be trapped?

You can look outside but can't go out.

Others look at you from the outside.

I spent a whole six hour stretch all cooped up in the GSR (group study room) on a Sunday. Without lunch and only biscuits and chips.

I'm tired. I'm hungry.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

[Burmese Temple Visit]
1. I visited the Burmese Temple this afternoon to show solidarity with the people of Myanmar in this very difficult period of their country's history. I have passed by the temple many times before on my way to Wang Qing Yuan or the Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall next door but never stepped into it before. The temple is more than a hundred years' old. Transporting the Buddha statue from Mandalay at that time was a huge effort, the story of which is told on a wall mural.

2. Four senior monks met me together with members of the temple committee. After they showed me around, we retired to the library downstairs for a discussion on the situation in Myanmar today. A few members of the Red Campaign, one wearing a t-shirt with Aung San Suu Kyi's face on it, joined us. There are a few tens of thousands of Myanmar people residing in Singapore, mostly on employment passes and work permits.

3. I told them that the Singapore Government will work with the other ASEAN countries to give full backing to Ibrahim Gambari, the special envoy of the UN Secretary General. I agreed with them that a genuine dialogue, not one just for show, was crucial. Without that, there can be no national reconciliation. Without national reconciliation, the country's future is bleak. ASEAN has little economic leverage but we do have some moral influence because Myanmar is part of the ASEAN family. Next month, during the ASEAN Summit, the leaders are bound to talk about Myanmar. It will be discussed again when ASEAN leaders meet the leaders of China, Japan, Korea, India, Australia, New Zealand and Europe.

4. When the brutal crackdown of peaceful demonstrators took place, Singaporeans felt a deep sympathy for the Myanmar people living here. Singaporeans of all races and religions SMSed their Myanmar colleagues expressing their concern. It is right that we should support the Myanmar people in their moment of need. If their country dissolves into chaos, we will be badly affected in ASEAN.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

Friday, October 19, 2007

[Singapore Cooperation Programme]

Distinguished Participants of the Singapore Cooperation Programme
Ladies and Gentlemen

1 I thank all of you for joining us as we celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the Singapore Cooperation Programme. Today, we also mark an important milestone: the number of participants reaching 50,000.

2 I would like to acknowledge the 55 international participants attending the two courses on the “Fundamentals of Aeronautical Information Services” and “Integrated Water and Waste Water Resource Management” who are here with us today. They come from 44 countries in the Asia-Pacific, Africa, Eastern Europe, Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean. I hope you will have a good experience here, learn from each other and make new friends.

SCP - Its Past, Present and Future

3 For many years after we became independent in 1965, Singapore was fortunate in having friends in many countries who shared their developmental experience with us. Without all the assistance we received, our passage from the Third World to the First would have been much more difficult. Now that we are better off, we hope that what assistance we can provide to others will be of some use.

4 At first, different ministries and agencies did what they could in an ad hoc manner. After some years, we decided that we had to be more organised. The Singapore Cooperation Programme was formally established in 1992 under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Over the last 15 years, the range of Singapore Cooperation Programme's activities has expanded both in scope and reach. We have been able to take in altogether 50,000 participants from 168 developing countries. We now train about 6,000 participants each year.

5 We have to work within the resources we have as a small country. We focus our efforts on areas where we can make a difference, principally in human resource capacity building.
6 Over the last 15 years, the Singapore Cooperation Programme has included some major assistance projects. Let me touch on a few of them:

(a) Singapore has committed a total of S$88 million to the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI) since its inception in 2001. The most concrete manifestation of our support is the four IAI training centres that we have set up in Phnom Penh, Vientiane, Yangon and Hanoi. To date, more than 11,000 participants have attended programmes in the four IAI centres.

(b) Singapore had helped to set up a National Productivity Centre in Botswana. The Botswana National Productivity Centre has since become a regional training centre for productivity improvement in southern Africa.

(c) Singapore launched the Small Developing States Technical Cooperation Programme (SIDSTEC) in 1999 to help Small Island Developing States achieve sustainable development. To date, the Programme has trained over 4,800 officials from 41 island developing states.

(d) Under the auspices of the Asia-Middle East Dialogue (AMED), Singapore is contributing to human resource development through two regional training centres in Qatar and Jordan. The AMED Regional Training Centre for Public Administration (RTCPA) in Qatar focuses on the training of civil servants and developing skills and strategies for excellence in public service. The AMED Regional Vocational Training Centre (RVTC) in Jordan focuses on developing skills in air-conditioning and heating systems maintenance and diagnostics for the construction industry.

Looking Ahead

7 Looking ahead, the Singapore Cooperation Programme will have to evolve to meet changing developmental needs. Apart from traditional areas like good governance, infocomm technology, civil aviation and port management, we will give greater attention to transboundary concerns like sustainable development, healthcare management, climate change and environmental management.

8 To increase our reach, the Singapore Cooperation Programme will forge more partnerships. We already have more than 30 international partnerships with developed countries and international organisations. By so doing, we have been able to do more with the same resources especially in the range of courses we offer.


9 We are committed to doing our part as responsible global citizens. Though we are small, small can be beautiful, or at least this is what we want to believe. There are many beautiful small countries in this world.

10 Our motto is “Joining Hands, Making Friends”. We hope that through our various programmes, Singapore will be able to develop deep friendships with many countries. At the individual level, we hope that the friendships forged will be for life. We are getting better now at keeping links to SCP alumni.

11 Let me conclude by congratulating the 50,000th Singapore Cooperation Programme participant. I wish all our international participants here a fruitful training programme and a pleasant stay in Singapore. If all goes well, we should not need to wait 15 years before welcoming the 100,000th participant.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

Thursday, October 18, 2007

I got attacked. When I was away. How cruel.

But I am back.

Feeling a bit emo today. Who says old people (above 20) do not know what emo-ism is. Haha.

Yup. I haven't been blogging that much. I'm listening to Nathan Hartono and the song triggers memories. Of long, long ago,

Okay. Not that long lah.

Anyway, the library is gonna close soon. Reason one that can be described using the word emo.

It's one of the more well designed libraries ever. And it is also the home of the STOMPers.

My buddy's birthday is tomorrow. And I'm staying up so I can spring a little birthday surprise on him later. I'm tired though. But I'll still wait. After all, birthdays only happen once a year.

So here's a rehearsal: Happy birthday bro!

Monday, October 15, 2007

[More tiring days to come]
If only I had more than 24 hours in a day. I would be happy but does it mean expectations of me will rise?

Just finished editing a 3000 plus word report on Thailand democracy. Elections may be affected according to reports now that the King is not that well.

Coincidentally, in church today (after a long, long break from church), we had Missions month. And surprise, surprise, our focus was on Thailand. I liked their short performance. Was watching it from the sound room as usual as I was on duty. A bird's eye view you might say.

I kindof miss my church pals. Haven't seen them for ages and didn't really chat with them today as I went for lunch minutes after service ended.

We went to eat Japanese food at a little restaurant opposite Novena Square. The tempura set was delicious. So was the katsu don.

Not bad. It cost about $45 bucks for three. What a relief from almost a week of mugging and projects.

But there's more to come - two more research papers, three projects, three mid terms - all waiting to pounce on me. And there's still the final exams too.

Some random thoughts: We spend more than half of our current lives studying.

Friday, October 12, 2007

[Pearl River Delta]
1. My last visit to the Pearl River Delta was in 1992, a few months after the famous southern tour by Deng Xiaoping. The explosive growth in China had just started and I can still remember the explosions I heard then at night as the Chinese blew up hills to clear land for development.

2. After 15 years, the transformation is dramatic. The delta has become one contiguous urban conurbation with a huge economy, a factory of the world. As I crossed the Humen bridge from Nansha to Dongguan, I thought of how China had changed since the destruction of British opium by Lin Zexu at Humen (which led to the Opium War and the ceding of Hongkong to the British).

3. I was at Nansha at the invitation of the HK Peihua Education Foundation to speak at its 25th anniverary forum. Not long after Deng put China on a new course of reform and opening up, a group of Hongkong businessmen decided to give time and money to help the Mainland. The trustees who turned up were some of HK's most important business leaders - Lee Sau Kee, Cheng Yu Tung, Walter Kwok, Ian Fok (son of Henry Fok) among others. Ian recalled how his father built the first toll bridges in the delta which led to thousands being built thereafter. His father also objected strongly to Chinese not being allowed into the White Swan Hotel. After the humiliation of the concession days when Chinese and dogs were denied entry into public parks, he felt that it was wrong to have a similar policy in modern China.

4. I spoke on the subject: Can China emerge peacefully? Deng wanted China to keep a low profile but China is too big for that now. The challenge is for China to become a 'responsible stakeholder in the global system' and for the major powers to admit China into their club. It won't be easy and the stakes are very high.

5. I am now in Shenzhen which looks much better than when I was last here some years ago. There are many beautiful buildings. The city leaders readily admit that the lush landscaping was an idea learnt from Singapore. A few months ago, the Mayor, Xu Zongheng, led a big delegation to study various aspects of Singapore's development including the preservation of our mangrove patch at Sg Buloh. The city is flushed with revenue and can become one of the world's great cities. Singapore has had more impact on Chinese mayors than most Singaporeans realize. When Deng asked the Chinese people to learn from Singapore in 1992, they took his call seriously.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

[TOC speaks to Ephraim]
Ephraim Loy, one of the men behind Singapore’s Foreign Affairs Minister George Yeo’s foray into blogging, has become something of a piñata on TOC.

Of the 44 comments so far posted in the article welcoming him on board, many were overwhelmingly negative, if not outright hostile.

Is he really a PAP running dog? Will he be running for the next elections? What does he think of the now infamous YoungPAP blogger Nicholas Lazarus’ comments on homosexuality?

Below is TOC’s interview with Ephraim.

TOC: What do you think about the perception that all grassroots leaders are in it to rub shoulders with the MPs or Ministers?

Ephraim: That’s an over-generalization, although I can see where that perception comes from. As a grassroots leader, you work closely with the MP and it definitely is an advantage. You’re able to give direct feedback about policies without having to go to forums or dialogues.

However, there are some grassroots leaders who are definitely in it for the thrill.

This is very obvious during block visits. Before block visits, there are clearly pre-assigned roles. Sometimes, the people in the entourage outnumber the residents because there are people following the procession who are unnecessary. Some of these are obviously there for the purposes of being seen with the MP.

TOC: There is an impression that you’re so pro PAP it hurts. Are there any party policies/positions you actually disagree with?

Ephraim: I disagree with their stand on 377A. Many of the people I interact with would repeal it, and I don’t see any indication of this conservative majority that the pro 377A camp claims exists. Some in Parliament have openly said they are against 377A (Mr Baey Yam Keng), and I hope they have the moral courage to take an open vote on it soon.

I’m also worried about the overlap between the grassroots and the PAP in opposition wards.

The country’s main grassroots body is the People’s Association. As the name suggests, it is supposed to be a non partisan association, for grassroots organization. They work closely with the elected representatives (which they call advisors to the grassroots organizations) in different constituencies to distribute grassroots aid. The only exception is in the opposition wards. Strangely, in the opposition wards, the grassroots advisor isn’t the elected representative, but a PAP man.

This allows the PAP man to fund projects to win party support. This might give residents the mistaken impression that the money is coming from the PAP to win votes. This should not be the case as grassroots projects should work with the elected representative of the constituency, regardless of his party affiliation.

I also really resent MM’s brand of cross causeway diplomacy. Characterizing Malaysian Chinese as an oppressed minority is, frankly, undiplomatic.

TOC: Hang on, does this mean you disagree with the recent YoungPAP blog post by Nicholas Lazarus expressing his disgust with homosexuals?

Ephraim: Absolutely. The comments were completely uncalled for.

TOC: The PAP’s brand of youth activism seems to be, join the grassroots, or do community service. Are there other options available, and would you encourage young people to take them?

Ephraim: Youth should fight for what they believe in, regardless of what their political views are. I’m not here to strengthen the PAP at the expense of the WP, because at the end of the day, Singaporeans would be worse off for only having one point of view.

I used to think youth were apathetic, but after being involved in the grassroots for almost two years, I’ve realized that there are many youths, at the grassroots level as well as in civil society, who are willing to organize and campaign for what they believe in. Sometimes I might disagree with their positions, but I think our country needs more people like that who stand up for what they believe in, and take action. Worst cases are young people who only know how to complain but don’t act.

So yes, I would encourage youth to get engaged in civil society activism. Better than armchair criticism.

TOC: Tell us something about yourself we don’t really know.

Ephraim: I’m not actually that into politics, I’m more of a lifestyle and youth issues writer. I get quite turned off by politics because I really dislike confrontation. Sometimes I get a lot of flak for being a YP member (like most of the 30+ comments in my introduction article on TOC), but I think people are just misdirecting their anger at the government towards me. I’m not responsible for a lot of the policies they draft, and some I might not even understand.

That’s why I much prefer community work, which involves more listening than arguing for a point of view.

You can’t really know why certain things are done certain ways until you see the big picture.

TOC: So why are you with YP instead of just in grassroots?

Ephraim: Sitting in on my first Meet-the-People’s Session (MPS) confirmed for me that if I wanted to be deeply involved with the community, the YP was one of the best place to do it. Not because it could best effect social transformation, but by the simple fact that most people turn to their MPs as a last resort.

These are people I wouldn’t normally come into contact with unless I organize or join a community service project. Being in the YP has allowed me to keep an ear on the ground, and my feet firmly rooted in the community I live in.

TOC: What type of grassroots workers turns you off the most?

Ephraim: I get most turned off by grassroots leaders who like to give positive feedback all the time. Like the advertisement some time back: hear only the good things.

TOC: What role do you see MM playing in the party?

Ephraim: I don’t think I’ll be the first person to say this, and I’m not saying this because of my position in grassroots. I think this is observable to many political watchers. MM is in a sense, a lightning rod for controversial issues.

The original question relating to homosexuality was posed by Loretta Chen, local director and the sister of actor Edmund Chen and it was actually in relation to censorship. MM doesn’t say anything without a reason, so the fact that he steered the question towards homosexuality points to a clear intention to broach the issue on his part. Now whether this was to test the waters for a possible relaxation of attitudes, no one is sure.

TOC: You’ll be fresh out of University by the time the next GE comes along. Just in time to run for elections. Will you?

Ephraim: This is something which I have never thought about. It’s not like planning a vacation or career. The job of an MP is not easy and it is a long and winding road. Being an MP is not about smiling and going round shaking hands looking happy. There’s more to it than just that. It’s a lot of hard work.

But I guess when the time comes I will have to deal with it. Many people have been joking about it – from schoolmates to grassroots leaders. The only thing I tell them is to support me when I need it most.

Article reporduced from theonlinecitizen.com

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

[Disappearing act]
Over the weekend strange things have been happening. But the things that have happened has proved to a certain extent that we are ready to be First World.

If you take a trip down to Ang Mo Kio MRT station, you do not see anymore national day banners on the lamp posts. In fact, since Friday, the banners have been disappearing one by one. My only guess could be that the town council workers have been going round removing them.

Similarly, the huge national day billboard in Marine Parade GRC, outside the Serangoon MRT station, has also disappeared.

And the final act. Even the buntings that I blogged about last week have mysteriously been taken down. Except for a little portion that is still clinging to the tree.

I was thinking to myself yesterday before leaving the house that if the buntings were still there I would personally remove them and return them to the nearby community club. At least instead of just typing mindlessly behind my computer screen, I could take the initiative to do something for the community here.

But alas, I realised that someone had been there before me.

So happily I went along to Marina Square for a birthday celebration of my best buddy. His birthday is next week but since we are both busy people, we decided to meet up yesterday for a KTV session.

The KTV room at K-Box that we visited had a nice view from the glass window. Apart from having lunch and singing, I was also admiring the explosion of colours outside the window. The room number is K3 just in case you are wondering.

I'm now able to appreciate Evan Yo's music after dissecting the lyrics. They are simple to read and easy to understand for someone who does not have a good foundation in the Chinese language. Pretty meaningful.

Monday, October 08, 2007

1. Two years in a row, I attended an iftar breaking of fast at Bedok Reservoir's Alkaff Mosque. It is coming to the end of Ramadan. Before the ceremony, MediaCorp TV asked if I could record a message for Hari Raya this weekend. I happily obliged.

2. Invited to say a few words, I reflected on the blessings we have received in Singapore. Unlike so many countries I have visited as Foreign Minister, here in Singapore we enjoy peace and development. I thought September 11 strengthened our society. Following that appalling event, the different religious groups in Singapore reached out to one another, partly out of fear and partly out of a sense of solidarity. In a few years, we have established a new pattern of inter-ethnic and inter religious relations. It is now commonplace to invite one another for cultural and religious celebrations. During Ramadan, non-Muslims take part in the Muslim breaking of fast.

3. I was invited to distribute food hampers to needy families in the Bedok Reservoir area. The day before, at Punggol CC, I had done the same in the Hougang area. It is not difficult to find sponsors for such acts of charity. Singaporeans are a generous people.

4. I was delighted to see Haji Siraj who proudly told me he was already 88 years old. He looked much younger than his age. He used to help me at Kembangan. Years ago, he showed me around Masjid Maidin off Changi Road when I was a new MP. We have many such wonderful community leaders who help keep our society strong at the grassroots.

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

Saturday, October 06, 2007

I've been thinking about this for the longest time.

And I have decided to go ahead with my plans.

From now on, there will be specific posts on art on my new blog - artblock. It's something new and I hope will be a draw and promote the local arts scene.

Check out my new art blog here

Friday, October 05, 2007

Is National Day in the heartlands still on? Some signs seem to indicate that it is still the season for red and white. It's already October but it seems no one's bothered to move ahead.

On my way home from Ang Mo Kio MRT station I could still see the national day banners on the lamposts complete with a smiling Prime Minister staring down at me. At Serangoon MRT station, you can see a huge billboard with our dear Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong walking confidently.

But what's most appalling is that the buntings on my block are still visibly intact save for one line. It's unsightly and ugly and yeah, I do not want to make a big fuss and write to the forum pages or call up the town council to complain.

I am a Singaporean. I live with what I have and appreciate it.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

[Hougang IUP Plus]

Dear Residents

1 This evening, 10 blocks in our precinct will vote on IUP Plus upgrading. Our precinct was completed in mid 1980s. It should now be rejuvenated. The IUP Plus programme will upgrade the common areas in our precinct and also the lifts so that they stop on every floor.

2 For the past 9 months, our grassroots leaders have worked hard to gather your feedback and draw up an upgrading package that meet your needs.

3 Let me highlight some of the proposed improvements. New drop-off porches and linkways will shelter us from the rain and sun. A new fitness corner, jogging track and pebble path will be built to help us keep healthy. There will also be a new open plaza, outdoor seating areas and a residents’ corner at Blk 513. The improvement of these common areas will be fully paid by the Government.

4 For lift upgrading, residents will have to pay part of the cost. The Government and Town Council will subsidize a large part of it. The amount you pay will depend on the block design and flat-type.

5 For the 5 high-rise blocks in our precinct - Blocks 511, 512, 513, 515 and 516 - the cost is $700 for 3-roomers, $1,050 for 4-roomers and $1,400 for 5-roomers. If you pay by monthly instalments over 10 years, the cost will be $7 per month for 3-roomers, $11 per month for 4-roomers and $14 per month for 5-roomers.

6 For Block 508, which is also a high-rise block, each flat owner’s share of the cost is $600, or $6 per month over 10 years. The cost is lower in this block because there is no need to add lifts or build new shafts.

7 For Blocks 509, 510, 514 and 517, which are low-rise blocks with few units each, the cost is slightly higher. The cost for 3-roomers ranges from $1,340 to $1,500, or about $14/$15 per month over 10 years. The cost for 4-roomers ranges from $1,710 to $2,250, or about $18 to $23 per month over 10 years.

8 Payment will only be made about 2½ to 3 years from now, after all the upgrading works have been completed. It can be made either in one lump sum or through monthly instalments, over a maximum period of 10 years, using either cash or CPF savings. For those who need help, HDB has various assistance schemes.

9 This programme will only be implemented if 75% or more of the residents vote in favour of it. Please support the programme as it will improve our living standard and enhance the value of our homes.

后 港 10 道 第 508 至 517 座 中 期 翻 新 延 伸 计 划 推 展 仪 式
2007 年 10 月 5 日 星 期 五
阿 裕 尼 集 选 区 基 层 组 织 顾 问 外 交 部 长 杨 荣 文 先 生 华 语 讲 话

各位居民, 各位朋友,
1 今 晚, 我 们 邻 里 中 的 10 座 组 屋 居 民 将 对 中 期 翻 新 延 伸 计 划 进 行 投 票。 我 们 的 邻 里 是 在 80 年 代 中 期 完 成 的。 现 在 该 是 使 它 年 轻 化 的 时 候。 按 照 中 期 翻 新 延 伸 计 划, 我 们 邻 里 中 的 公 共 地 方 将 获 得 翻 新。 电 梯 也 会 获 得 翻 新, 以 便 在 每 层 楼 停 留。

2 过 去 9 个 月 来, 我 们 的 基 层 领 袖 积 极 向 你 们 收 集 意 见, 以 便 为 你 们 设 计 一 个 足 以 应 付 你 们 需 求 的 配 套。

3 以 下 是 一 些 计划中 的 改 良 项 目: 新 乘 客 上 下 车 门 廊 和 有 盖 走 道, 让 我 们 免 受 日 晒 雨 淋。 新 健 身 中 心、 跑 步 道 和 卵 石 道, 让 我 们 保 持 身 体 健 康。 新 露 天 广 场、 户 外 座 位 区 和 第 513 座 的 居 民 角 落。 这 些 公 共 地 方 的 翻 新 费 用 将 全 部 由 政 府 负 责。

4 至 于 电 梯 翻 新, 居 民 必 须 分 担 一 部 分 费 用。 政 府 和 市 镇 理 事 会 将 津 贴 大 部 分。 居 民 所 须 分 担 的 数 目 视 组 屋 设 计 和 类 型 而 定。

5 我 们 邻 里 中 的 第 511、512、513、515 及 516 这 5 座 高 层 组 屋,3 房 式 屋 主 所 须 分 担 的 费 用 是 700 元, 4 房 式 的 是 1050 元, 5 房 式 的 是 1400 元。 如 果 屋 主 以 每 月 分 期 付 款 方 式 分 10 年 还 清,3 房 式 屋 主 每 月 只 付 7 元, 4 房 式 屋 主 每 月 只 付 11 元, 5 房 式 屋 主 每 月 只 付 14 元。

6 第 508 座 也 是 高 层 组 屋, 每 个 屋 主 所 须 分 担 的 费 用 是 600 元 或 每 个 月 6 元, 分 10 年 还 清。 这 座 的 费 用 较 低 是 因 为 不 须 要 加 建 电 梯 或 电 梯 井。

7 至 于 第 509、510、514 及 517 座 低 层 组 屋, 由 于 每 座 只 有 数 个 单 位, 费 用 会 较 高。 三 房 式 屋 主 所 须 分 担 的 费 用 从 1340 元 到 1500 元 不 等, 约 等 于 每 个 月 14 元/15 元, 为 期 10 年。 四 房 式 屋 主 所 须 分 担 的 费 用 从 1710 到 2250 元 不 等, 约 等 于 每 个 月 18 元/23 元, 为 期 10 年。

8 费 用 不 必 现 在 偿 还, 而 是 等 到 大 约 2½ 到 3 年 后, 翻 新 工 程 完 全 结 束 时 才 开 始 偿 还, 而 且 可 动 用 中 央 公 积 金 存 款 或 现 款 一 次 过 付 清 或 每 月 分 期 付 款, 偿 还 期 可 高 达 10 年。 至 于 需 要 帮 助 的 居 民, 建 屋 局 备 有 各 种 援 助 计 划 协 助 解 决 问 题。

9 这 项 计 划 必 须 获 得 75% 或 以 上 的 居 民 投 票 赞 成 才 能 展 开。 请 支 持 这 项 计 划。 它 将 提 高 我 们 的 生 活 标 准, 给 我 们 的 房 屋 增 值。

Do also read my posts on Beyond SG

[Free Burma]
Here's one post for Myanmar.

Monday, October 01, 2007

[The Invisible Thread]
In conjunction with The Singapore Art Show, "scape's Artist-in-Residence", Dyn, has created an artwork that connects visual arts and music together.

It is titled "The Invisible Thread" and aims to explain the presence of art in music.

An entire wall is dedicated to artistic photos about bands - scenes of their studio recordings, concerts, singing and even potraits. Here are some of my favourite ones.

I kindof like this one. It seems that the main characters revel in watching the world just pass them by.

I'd always love to pose with electric guitars. It brings back memories of how I used to go to guitar shops with my army buddy Tiger.

The expression on this singer intrigues. If you look closely, you can see the trickles of sweat on his face illuminated by the spotlights.

On the other walls are characters such as polar bears, a penguin and tigers performing in a band. Quite cute if you ask me.

This artwork is on display at *scape which is just diagonally across Cathay Cineleisure Orchard.