I totally disagree with ST forum letter “A question of fairness” on the issue of Filipinos holding their national day celebrations in the heart of Orchard Road.
ST forum letter writer, Jeffrey Law, should put the issue into perspective instead of:
– calling some Singaporeans xenophobic
– insisting we must be accommodating
– our actions must be conducive to the strengthening of good ties between two countries.
Singaporeans are one of the most tolerant people on this planet. See, even when our own government implemented policies which are detrimental to citizens, many still ‘kwai kwai’ and simply wait for the next election to register their unhappiness.
Singaporeans welcome every foreigner but not at the mindless rate allowed by the shortsighted PAP which ignored/did not foresee the consequences. So why must citizens continue to take things lying down when we had not even approved PAP’s immigration policy in the first place?
Jeffrey fails to understand the reason for people to continue commenting on issues pertaining to competition for jobs and space. This issue has been singlehandedly created by the PAP and it is far from being resolved.
If the Philippines government had allowed a few million foreigners into the country to take away their jobs, does Jeffrey expect Filipinos reaction to be positive?
If our actions must be interpreted by foreign countries as being conducive to doing business, then we will be held hostage by every country whose citizens are here! The next in line to demand independence day celebrations will likely be Indonesians, Bangladeshis, Indians, Myanmarese, Thais, Vietnamese, etc.
What about the million or so PRCs who are giving a frustrated PAP MP the chance to patrol Geylang? Would the PAP not accommodate them by allowing a request for fireworks in Geylang on their national day on 1 Oct?
If Jeffrey wants to be accommodating, he could invite a few hundred foreigners to his place at his expense. PAP MPs could also do likewise at their expense.
Whatever national day celebrations foreigners want, they should be conducted indoors (embassy grounds etc) and not encroach onto public space. With about 200,000 Filipinos in Singapore, even a fraction of their numbers will be overwhelming for the authorities.
The government should not have to spend tax dollars and deploy limited public resources managing events for the benefit of foreigners. Isn’t there already a shortage of security personnel? What about disruptions to public transportation, traffic jams, etc?
The PAP has allowed too many foreigners into the country in order to profit from them. Now that their numbers have grown significantly, they can simply walk all over the government. Citizens can see how weak the government is when all it does is sit on the fence.
PM Lee say those who harassed the organisers are a “disgrace to Singapore”. On the other hand, many would agree this problem would not have arisen if Filipinos and the government had understood issues on the ground had reached boiling point. When the government sits on the fence, many citizens would also agree they are a disgrace to citizens.
But when the government responds, guess what? It usually sides with foreigners, whacks its citizens and the mainstream media will go into overdrive to drive home the government’s point.
The issue is not simply about not allowing foreigners from one country to celebrate their national day publicly. Which other countries will be allowed to follow suit? Do citizens agree with the use of limited public resources to manage such mega events? Why does the government continue not to engage the public and ignore citizens’ feedback?