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LEE HSIEN LOONG URGES NEW CITIZENS TO INTEGRATE WITH SINGAPOREANS

Speaking at a citizenship ceremony in Cheng San Community Club yesterday (30 Aug), PM Lee has urged new Singapore citizens to actively integrate into Singapore society. He witnessed some 150 people become new Singaporeans at the ceremony. At the same time, PM Lee asked Singaporeans to help their new fellow-countrymen fit in.

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AUSTRALIAN EMBASSY BREAKS S'PORE'S FAIR CONSIDERATION FRAMEWORK WHILE ADVERTISING FOR RESEARCH OFFICER

Does it mean that the Australian High Commission only advertised on the Jobs Bank to “wayang” (put on a show) when it had no intention of hiring locals for the job? Note that companies applying for an Employment Pass for foreigners to work in Singapore need to quote the job advertisement ID on the Jobs Bank to show that they have already advertised for locals. Otherwise, without any advertisement on the Jobs Bank, a company will not be able to apply for an Employment Pass for a foreign PMET.

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WHAT YOUNG POLITICIANS NEED: A THICK SKIN, AND A CAUSE TO FIGHT FOR

You are no stranger to harsh criticism. How did you cope with the stress and avoid having a meltdown? Usually, I would run it off. But because of the intense campaigning during the elections, I was often exhausted. So, I would watch a comedy on DVD or, if I could, sleep or take a nap.

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HAN FOOK KWANG: NON-GRADS AND THEIR PLACE IN TALENT NARRATIVE

What's not so clear though is how this narrative affected ordinary Singaporeans, especially non-graduates, and how they saw their place in society. Did they feel like second-class citizens, of less value, because they could make only limited contributions to the country's progress, especially in the material sense? Did they have less confidence in the future, for their children especially, knowing they were not regarded highly and would not be able to join the select ranks? Or did it spur them to make even greater effort so they could become one of them? Perhaps some were inspired, but there would be many who might have felt they didn't belong in a country that continually focused on the contributions of the top.

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THE GLASS CEILING FOR NON-GRADS

The 39-year-old had thought along those lines 23 years ago when, after her O levels, she chose to go to a polytechnic instead of a junior college and university like most of her classmates did, despite her 11-point aggregate. Her lack of a degree would later prove a disadvantage at various times over the past 18 years working in both the public and private sectors, when she was denied opportunities because she was not a graduate. The Public Service Division says there is no official glass ceiling for non-graduates - they can technically get promoted as long as they do well. Yet, in recent times, few, if any, have made it to the top echelons of a statutory board or ministry.

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FUNDING BOOST THROUGH GOVT GRANTS

Currently, the Government matches the donations raised by the groups, subject to an annual cap. Last year, the cap was raised for the matching grant for Yayasan Mendaki, the Association of Muslim Professionals and Malay Muslim organisations from $4 million to $5 million from this financial year onwards. The Singapore Indian Development Association (Sinda) now receives up to $1.7 million a year, while the Eurasian Association gets not more than $200,000 annually.

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103-YEAR OLD SPRINTER WANTS TO CHALLENGE USAIN BOLT

Closing in on his 104th birthday, a twinkle-toed Japanese sprinter has thrown down the challenge to the world's fastest man Usain Bolt, telling him: "Let's rumble!" Hidekichi Miyazaki - who holds the 100m world record for centenarians at 29.83sec and is dubbed 'Golden Bolt' after the Jamaican flyer - plans to wait another five years for his dream race and was happy to reveal his secret weapon: his daughter's tangerine jam.

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[YOUR LETTERS] A PESSIMISTIC OUTLOOK FOR SINGAPORE?

I believe PM Lee is not confident that Singapore will have sufficient number of good paying jobs for our undergraduates who are going to join the work force a couple of years later with a heavy burden. With an uncertain global outlook, it is better to make the non-grads and grads compete against one another now to benefit the economy as much as possible before the tsunami hits.

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SG50 Special #49: Madam Indranee Nadisen, the Superwoman Who Raised 45 Children In Singapore

It is these challenges that inspired me to write in and nominate this 74 year old Singaporean superwoman by the name of Indranee Elizabeth Nadisen for your SG50 Series. Not only does she have six children of her own, over the past 35 years, she fostered and cared for a total of 45 abandoned, abused or neglected children. Her selflessness and dedication to helping the under-privileged is beyond words. While these 45 fostered children were under her care, she treated them no differently from her own children.

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NOT ALL DOCTORS ARE GREEDY & HEARTLESS

My husband, the sole breadwinner in the family, passed away unexpectedly when I was into my seventh month of pregnancy. It was a devastating period for my seven-year-old daughter and me. Upon knowing our situation, my gynaecologist, Dr Adrian B. Woodworth from Thomson Women’s Clinic, waived his prescription and caesarean charges. He also approached the anaesthetist, Dr Yvonne Lim, and paediatrician, Dr Lillian Lim, and they also waived their charges before my delivery date, to ease my financial burden. This episode goes to show that not all private-sector doctors and hospitals are profit-driven.

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