21 November 2012

Anonymous Academic Excellence

The Ministry of Education and Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board will no longer disclose the names of the top students at the Primary School Leaving Examinations and the O level examinations.

The move was taken in line with the importance of recognising students for their holistic development and all-round excellence, and to balance the over-emphasis on academic results.

11 November 2012

Parliament: Why Quorum Is Important But Not Enough

On 16 October 2012, Parliament met at 1:30 p.m. and the sitting continued until 3:44 p.m. when it was suspended by the Speaker.  When the sitting resumed as scheduled at 4:05 p.m., a (Nominated) Member asked the Speaker to confirm, as a point of order, that there was a quorum in the Chamber even though he (the Member) believed that a quorum would be achieved in due course.

A count was duly made at 4:07 p.m., and it showed that there were only 11 MPs present.

The Constitution prescribes the quorum of the House to be one-quarter of the total number of Members, excluding the Speaker (or the MP presiding in his absence).  The current Parliament has 99 Members, including Non-Constituency Members and Nominated Members.

86 Members, excluding the Speaker, were present when the House met at 1:30 p.m.

04 November 2012

Labour Force to Grow 1.5 to 2 Per Cent?

Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Lim Swee Say warned on Thursday that Singapore's jobs would grow 2 per cent or less per annum in the coming years.

He attributed this to the Government's tightening of foreign labour inflow and the weak global demand for goods and services.

The following day, Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin said job growth could moderate to 1.5 to 2 per cent.

The labour force in September 2012 was 3.31 million.  1.5 per cent is about 50,000 people and 2 per cent is about 66,000 people.

What are the implications?