I refer to “The ticking time bomb of the 99-year-leasehold HDB flats“.
Although the ‘time bomb’ of a 99-year leasehold HDB flat starts ticking the moment HDB hands over flats to lessees, the PAP government has successfully tried to mask this fact with propaganda and half truths.
The man responsible for the current mess: former PM Goh Chok Tong. 26 years ago, Lau Goh told HDB lessees:
It is tempting to call Goh a liar because he should have known that the value of any 99-year property cannot “continue to rise” perpetually.
Goh somehow ‘forgot’ to tell Singaporeans the whole truth and nothing but the truth: increased property prices will ultimately trickle down to higher cost of living.
Goh was the culprit who raised our cost of living to Swiss standard: prices of HDB flats shot up 400% from 1990 to 1996.
While AE of HDB lessees was ongoing, a different but bigger AE programme was underway: ministers were also enhancing their own financial assets. Chart below shows PM’s salary vs HDB RPI.
Unedited chart @ teoalida.com
One of Goh’s ‘accomplices’ in AE is former paper colonel Lim Hng Kiang, then Acting MND minister. Lim:
“With the upgrading of the precincts, we are trying to achieve the objective where the end result… will be a new town that is even more attractive than Bishan and will command higher prices than Bishan.”
Lee Kuan Yew of course had a hand in talking up HDB flat prices. 4 years before his death, LKY said:
“The government continually invests in upgrading the homes of its citizens, to increase their value for the owners. As Singapore prospers, the value of their HDB homes also appreciate.”
Perhaps LKY was acting stupid for a while because he should have known there was no way the price of a 99-year leasehold property could increase forever just because of government upgrading.
If Singapore continues to prosper for a hundred years, will “HDB homes also appreciate”? LKY was not being truthful. 😦
To impress the public that HDB flat prices could defy gravity, PAP politicians were not only telling half truths: they lied.
After the AE scam was exposed, HDB lessees are now told by MND Minister Lawrence Wong that HDB flats are just a “store of value” for retirement.
What’s next? PAP should not continue to take Singaporeans for fools.
Hundreds of billions in CPF retirement savings are now tied up in public housing.
At the end of a HDB flat lease, most CPF members’ retirement plans will go up in smoke with their CPF evaporating into thin air.
PAP should be held accountable for lying about asset enhancement to win votes. It would be foolish not to do so.