'Every soldier is precious to us. Every national serviceman, every operationally ready national serviceman, every regular who serves with us is a precious and valuable person.'
- Defense Minister Teo Chee Hean, 2006
"Yes, yes, the govt also increases GST & implement
means testing to help the poor"
I was not treated badly by regulars when I served my NS. Whatever you think of them, they are Singaporeans just like the rest of us.
.I find the letter below by WO Hendry Minjoot very sad. Not because he got retrenched after 32 years of service with the SAF and have a family with 2 school going children to feed ....people above 40 getting retrenched in Singapore is now routine. I found the letter sad because Mr. Minjoot actually believed the propaganda he was fed by the organisation he served.
'The SAF is concerned with the well-being of its people and their families, the SAF values its people, looks after them and their families so that they can give wholehearted attention to their assigned duties.' - SAF Management Philosophy..
Technically, his organisation did not lie to him. Since he is retrenched, he is no longer with the SAF so their obligation to him has ended. As I understand he reached 50 yrs of age and the SAF claims that it has difficulty offering "suitable jobs" & there will be long term stagnation. I see the SAF is retrenching him for his own good to prevent him from stagnation 5 years before his retirement age.
A few days ago, our esteemed PAP Minister Lim Boon Heng actually said finding jobs for the elderly is a national priority and here we have the best funded organisation in Singapore retrenching people before their retirement age using a standard excuse that private sector companies use. If SAF doesn't want to keep older workers, why should profit oriented companies in the private sector even bother? A few months ago, PAP MPs & Ministers were in parliament speaking passionately against ageism swearing to go after evil employers who practice ageism....threatening to criminalise ageism.
Singaporeans are lucky to have a govt that constantly reassure them that their future is bright and that the Golden Age is upon us. All of us feel better after listening to their wonderful speeches and fantastic plans for us. We should be happy as we have a caring govt that put our interest above of everything else.
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Nov 6, 2007
Warrant officer asked to retire 5 years earlier
I WAS a regular serviceman in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF). I served a total of 32 years, comprising full-time national service, reservist and regular service, from 1974-2006.
I was one of more than 200 regular servicemen and women in the Army who were notified in May last year that we would be given Special Early Transition. Some of the reasons cited included difficulty in offering us 'suitable jobs' in the long run, restructuring and possible 'stagnation'. We were given only six months to transit.
Having attained the rank of a warrant officer in 2001, it meant that I was able to serve till the compulsory retirement age (CRA) of 55. I transitted last November after just turning 50, five years short of the CRA.
The Control of Personnel Centre announced that we were not under-performers. I was still PES 'B' and I received my performance bonuses annually without fail. I had also met all other requirements, i.e., Individual Physical Proficiency Tests, Annual Trainfire Programme, Body Mass Index, and Annual Proficiency Knowledge Test.
I also did not have any discipline or medical problems. The latter meant that I was still combat fit and still deployable. There are some who have not conformed to one or more of these requirements and yet are still serving in the organisation.
Till today, I am still somewhat in a state of depression at how the organisation had overlooked all my years of loyal and dedicated service.
The SAF Management Philosophy states:
'The SAF is concerned with the well-being of its people and their families, the SAF values its people, looks after them and their families so that they can give wholehearted attention to their assigned duties.'
The Defence Minister himself said last year:
'Every soldier is precious to us. Every national serviceman, every operationally ready national serviceman, every regular who serves with us is a precious and valuable person.' The organisation failed to honour its word to allow me and many others to serve till the CRA of 55. I have a wife and two young children still attending school.
Second Warrant Officer (Retired) Henry Minjoot