What do S’poreans really want from the public service?


Are our public service policies really helping Singaporeans?

I refer to the article “Public servants urged to view service through citizen’s eyes” (Straits Times, Jul 5).

It states that “hopes to see in the public service, in which more empathetic policies and programmes will be designed from the citizen’s point of view.

… warned: “If we keep doing things the same way, we will do injustice to ourselves and our country. If we are not careful, we will be left behind in the dustbin of history.””

In the context of “more empathetic policies … from the citizen’s point of view” and “If we keep doing things the same way, we will do injustice to ourselves and our country” – here’s arguably, what many Singaporeans may have a gripe with:

… increasing the non-Singaporean workforce to an estimated 47 per cent (excluding new citizens} of the total workforce

… increasing the non-Singaporean population to 39 per cent (excluding new citizens} of the total population

… increasing the non-Singaporean student population in the public universities to an estimated 34 per cent (excluding new citizens} of the total university enrolment

… policies that keep increasing the cost of living – electricity, water, healthcare, parking, childcare and university fees, service and conservancy charges (S & CC), public transport fares, etc

… policies that have resulted in low wages and under-employment –  how many of the 791,900 employed residents with gross monthly income (including employee CPF contribution) less than $2,500, according to the Yearbook of Manpower Statistics 2017, are PMETs?

Leong Sze Hian


About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.