[YOUR LETTERS] UPSET WITH GOVERNMENT SPENDING $4.4M TO WOO SINGAPOREAN QUITTERS

Dear All Singapore Stuff,

I’m absolutely disgusted that our government has spent $4.4 million of hard-earned tax payers’ monies to fund and organise Singapore Day in London. Why is the government spending so much money on such a frivolous event overseas for Singaporean “quitters” to eat free hawker food like Bak Kut Teh and Laksa, when there are so many poor and needy Singaporeans who have to make ends meet by collecting cardboard or clearing food trays at the kopitiams. And we even have a Minister who has the cheek to say “How much do you want? Do you want three meals in a hawker centre, food court or restaurant?” when asked for an increase in public assistance.

These Singapore “quitters” have obviously decided to leave our country for better opportunities elsewhere, and are probably now earning much more than us who have chosen (or more likely have no choice) to stay in Singapore. So if they miss hawker food, or local comedic acts etc, they can jolly well afford a plane ticket back to Singapore to experience it right? Why do taxpayers like me have to foot the bill? I’d very much rather have my taxes used to provide the poor with three meals in a hawker center than for the privileged “quitters” to have a taste of hawker fare so that they can reminisce about their home country.

I also don’t understand why our government would rather spend so much money trying to court these overseas “quitters’ to come back than to improve the existing infrastructure and living conditions in Singapore so that lesser people will think of migrating overseas. Does the government value people with foreign educational background or work experience more than those with local experience? What does this say about the standard of our local workforce and educational institutions? Furthermore, do they really think that after being exposed to having more freedom of speech and movement, and with higher earning power, that these “quitters” will be enticed to come back to Singapore just because of some free Bak Kut Teh? Please lah, it’s totally like a girl who cannot get over her ex-boyfriend and tries all means and ways to woo him back with food that they have shared memories of, when the guy has already moved on.

Therefore, I feel that the government should not be wasting so much time and money on such useless events, and put the money to better use like distributing it to the poor.

Ben Lim

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