A Singaporean-First Policy Can Help Keep Disharmony at Bay
Today’s page 1 report about a duo behind The Real Singapore site facing sedition charges was a bit of a surprise. A surprise not because of any impending trouble for them but because one of them is said to be Australian Japanese.
What motives a foreigner may have in being a party to the Singapore-centric site or trying to disrupt harmony in the country is something that is best left to the investigators.
But if there is a hint of xenophobia or racist behaviour in the actions of some, I think a part of the blame may have to vest with the government.
Jobs, Varsity Places: With foreigners making up about 40% of the resident population, qualified Singaporeans are being steadily overlooked in jobs. University places are also being grabbed by foreigners. The boom in population through import of the so-called foreign talent is already affecting the quality of life for locals.
Moreover, if for jobs that pay a monthly salary in excess of $12k employers don’t even have to post the openings in the Jobs Bank, what motivation do they have to give Singaporeans a chance?
Resistance: Even in such large countries as the U.S., where foreigners account for only 20% of the population, the import of excessive alien labour does trigger resistance. Nearer home, Australia is no exception.
In a post here on January 1 this year, I had argued that the country is still not xenophobic but, if that happens, the biggest victims will be Singaporeans themselves as the minority races among them can be easily targeted. And disharmony will be sown for ever to the detriment of Singapore.
I am hoping that at least in the country’s golden jubilee year, a Singaporean-first policy is seriously enforced.
G Joslin Vethakumar