Tag Archives: Straits Times 12 April 2014

Medical officers promised that Ganesh would be taken care of during NS

Art director Renganathan Magindren told The Straits Times that his son was diagnosed as "stable" by the Defence Ministry's doctors, who also said there was a support system to take care of Pte Ganesh. His son's supervising officer at the 24th Battalion Singapore Artillery, Captain Jessie Goh, also seemed like a "caring, obliging person", added the 54-year-old.

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‘When you’ve an opportunity to improve your life, grab it’

One of (former prime minister) Lee Kuan Yew's major political platforms was to eradicate poor housing. His plan was to build 50,000 units (in five years). They formed the Housing and Development Board (HDB). The HDB had no planners. The expat architects half-finished Queenstown but packed up and left. The HDB headhunted me and created a title, architect-planner. First thing they told me: "Finish Queenstown." One way to swell the numbers was to do a lot of one-room flats. No more than 300 sq ft. No partitioning. Communal toilets. Communal kitchen. A lift was a luxury. Every fifth floor, you had a lift so that the tenants walked two floors down or two floors up. We also could not afford casement windows. We used louvres, with a lock. You press it down, it locks, so people cannot break in.

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HIGH-FLYER CIVIL SERVANT KWEK MEAN LUCK: “I WANTED TO BUY HER CHAIRS AND UPGRADE HER BED, HER CLOTHES”

It was a humbling experience. "It shows that in terms of assistance, you need to have that broader view of what is helpful and not just have your view of what is helpful." These and other encounters taught him that people's circumstances are complex and that non-material assistance - like company - can be just as important. Caritas is building a social services hub in Toa Payoh, and Mr Kwek recalls a social worker's advice: "Please don't make it look like a help centre, because if you do, those who need help will not come. People don't want to be seen as though they need help."

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SINGAPOREANS INFECTED BY MEASLES OUTBREAK IN PHILIPPINES

A measles outbreak in the Philippines has infected 23 Singaporeans who had travelled there since January, said an alert from the Ministry of Health (MOH). They are among 80 people here have come down with measles so far this year. This is high, given that the annual numbers were 46 and 38 respectively for the past two years. But the risk of an outbreak here is low, said the MOH, as most people are vaccinated against this highly contagious disease.

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