Friday, June 16, 2006

GE Issue Lift Upgrading

Recently, quite a number of people have written and spoken on the issue of lift upgrading. I would like to put up my view from another angle. This view is formulated after some discussion with some friends.

Many people would be surprised by the "generous promise" of lift upgrading made by PAP government. But one should ask, has the PAP government been so generous towards Singaporeans before?

Many people really think that PAP wanted lift upgrading just for its political gains but there is some more valid technical reasons for having lift landing at each and every floor for old HDB flats.

For a self proclaimed World Class government, it has made a grave mistake in the past by building HDB without lift landing on each and every floor. The reason given as "people at that time like privacy" is really crappy to start with and cannot hold any water. Even for the colonial ruled HK back in 70s, all buildings more than 7 storey high fitted with lifts will have at least one lift that could reach each and every floor. This is called "fireman lift". Yes. This is to adhere to world class fire safety standards but one may ask, why the self proclaimed world class government did not adhere to world class fire safety standards?

What PAP govt is doing right now is to correct past mistake; it is not really about political gain but it is about fixing up past mistakes.

I was told that the fire safety rules have been made in such a way to exempt HDB flats built before a certain year from adhering to the stringent fireman lift requirement. But new HDB flats and buildings will have to adhere to this fire safety standards strictly. One must ask, are HDB flats built before that arbitrary date so "special" that it makes fire fighting so easy that we do not need fireman lifts? Contrary to this, the design of these old HDB flats make fire fighting very difficult.

It is of course really absurd to ask residents to co-pay for such glaring world class mistake made by the world class government. Besides, those living in these old flats are mainly elderly Singaporeans who might have retired and have little or no income at all. Why would we want to force them to pay for the world class government's mistake of the past? And even more ridiculous for PAP to use it to gain political capital!

To be fair to PAP government, it has corrected its oversight of fire safety for HDB flats before, though quietly. Fire access roads to old HDB flats have been created. Fire rated doors have been installed for those flats near the staircase FREE OF CHARGE. But what about fireman lifts? Lift landing on each and every floor to facilitate fire fighting?

I would urge the PAP government to step out of their own political agenda and look at the issue on a more altruistic manner. This is about fire safety of ALL SINGAPOREANS living in old HDB flats we are talking about, regardless whether they vote for PAP or not! I would urge PAP government to make this an urgent need, top priority of all other cosmetic HDB upgrading, to make it a safer living environment for all. If we could save on all other less urgent upgrading, we could well finance all the necessary lift upgrading for ALL OLD HDB flats.

Lift upgrading for lift landing on each floor is an URGENT AND NECESSITY to comply to fire safety standards. It should not become a political party's tool to win votes.

Goh Meng Seng


Minister of Welfare said...

"Lift upgrading for lift landing on each floor is an URGENT AND NECESSITY to comply to fire safety standards. It should not become a political party's tool to win votes."

GMS, I agree totally with you.

Anonymous said...

seng han tong asked if WP in power would WP upgrade PAP wards first?

Anonymous said...

I guess WP would upgrading the lift depending on the area that need to upgrade more urgent, not depend on the MP belongs to which party !

Anonymous said...

oh really? ask them dont ACT NOBLE. might as well tell me if they in power they r nt drawing a single cent.

Anonymous said...

A friend of mine who worked closely for a minister (he is an AO) told me this.

The upgrading idea came about because HDB was making huge profits from the sale of its supposedly subsidised HDB flats. They did not want the profits to become an issue so they came up with this idea of ploughing back the profits to reduce the glaring reserves. It was so successful that they made it an election strategy! Singaporeans' own doing.

I remembered Lee Han Shih questioned HDB's operations and profits some years back.

Hence, the upgrading fund is really money gained from making the people bear a 30-year loan for an affordable flat :(

Not economic benefits gained from their good governance, as the latest spin seems to say.

It's sad to live in fairy tale land of Singapore with its many spin doctors.

When is TRUTH the TRUTH?

Anonymous said...

Look at the balance sheet from the HDB, most of the money comes from issuing Bonds to the government! that profit is paid as interest to the government! and then we have to service a loan on what is not a subsidised flat! shameful HDB.

I read Mah's reply to WP on prioritizing upgrading in the Forum toady. what a bunch of BS. I have never read so much BS coming from a "top calibre peanut earning minister".

Anonymous said...

Fighting for fairness is "act noble"?

At least it is better than some party which is a total jerk but is trying to pretend that it is whiter than white.

Anonymous said...

I saw the following comment at :

"姓名:Daivdchan on 2006/6/20 01:13
话题:不要给马宝山的话所蒙骗. 不能同时进行组屋翻新是国家发展部"无能"表现的借口
据联合早报19/6/2006报导. 马宝山说:"翻新计划是用人民行动党政府所累积的财政

他也说: "翻新计划是一项全国性计划,会在所有的选区展开。不过,由于资源有限,

一向来, 很多人被马宝山和PAP官员的话所蒙骗, 以为政府不为反对党区翻新是基于
政治原因, 但实际上是政府或马宝山所管理的国家发展部"无能"的表现的借口.原因是:

- 新加坡的外汇储备已经达到新币2000忆, 而且一直在增加, 如果现在同时在全国
性进行大规模翻新, 财政不是问题.

- 实际上是马宝山所管理的国家发展部问题多多, 如: 职员的工作效率低, 没办法
和内部, 外部及其他政府部门, 如: 市理会, SPRING, NEA, PWD等在作谐调上有困
难, 以至 翻新计划要拖延到"2015年才前翻新所有组屋电梯". (联合早报17/6/2006报

- 还有1万多间空置组屋和店屋, 人民收入少, 如果全国全面翻新, 恐怕组屋和店屋

- 由于国家发展部效率低, 拖欠承包商的工作应付款项PROGRESS PAYMENT, 使很多
承包商倒闭, 对国家发展部是敬而远之, 职员连大小承包商也未必能协调整个翻新

- 马宝山为了掩盖国家发展部的效率低, 与内部, 外部及其他政府部门不协调, 就
以政治理由来转移人民和反对党的视线, 如"行动党在竞选时已把翻新计划列为主要

- 为了PAP的名誉, 李总理也应该注意国家发展部的"无能"表现, 以免为了翻新计划在下届
大选失败. "

Is it really ?

Anonymous said...

1st class govt of the world have to use so many years time to upgrading lift ?

Anonymous said...

then u tell them nt to take a single cent if in power. if WP really upgrade PAP wards 1st when in power, LOYAL DOGS like u will be first ones to bite them!!!

Goh Meng Seng said...

Hi all,

There will not be an issue of "who first" if WP really become the government. The decision of lift upgrading will depend on the merits of flats, not political affiliation nor support shown.

I believe all WP supporters will support our way of doing things, even if it means that those in PAP wards are upgraded just because these flats are older and need the lifts to be upgraded badly.

WP will definitely be different from PAP in this instance, for sure. If not, I will be the first one to quit WP.

Goh Meng Seng

Anonymous said...

Or we can vote WP out too!

That's democracy. That's called having a say on how your country is being run.

That's justice and equality where each vote is the same. Not some that cost 600 dollars each while others cost $180m.

Guess Singaporeans will never have the courage to taste democracy and to feel in control of their destiny.

For all the first class crap they spoke of, inwardly, they fear they could not decide wisely. They still need to suckle like babies.

Silly fools to be tortured by what-ifs ...

Anonymous said...

".... if WP really upgrade PAP wards 1st when in power, LOYAL DOGS like u will be first ones to bite them!!! " ?

Do u mean loyal dogs like u will bite your party if your party d not upgrade your wards first ? So your party worrying supporter like u will bite them n let u upgrade first ?

Then may i know what is the meaning of your 'LOYAL' ?

I d not join any party but i believe that Loyal supporters will support the way of their party doing things n not bite them. especially when the way is fair for everybody in a country.

What kind of party will have what kind of supporters !

Anonymous said...

of course needless to say a LOYAL DOG like u sure expect some form of return but when return nt coming ur way u sure BITE them.

Anonymous said...

once again a NOBLE ACT put up by GMS. Once in power everyting reversed. Well maybe this the tactic he pulling to BUY support but @ the same time losing support of LOYAL WP DOGS.

Anonymous said...

TALK NOBLE seems to be a FINE ART by GMS. If these pple are really tht PRINCIPLED james gomez would hv been kicked out right in the first place.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

I thought acting NOBLE has already been taken to extreme heights by our PAP government???

You mean, even this area they are also losing to WP?

No way .... I am a PAP supporter, don't insult my faith.

Anonymous said...

If expecting some form of return then must quickly goto support the one can afford to give now ! Right ?

So, what r the reasons for the pple to support the one can't give them now ?

Anonymous said...

Upgrading lift is very important n must do it as soon as possible, every HDB flat residence sure hope that their flat can finish it earlier !

Some pple know that they may be have to wait longer if vote for those u said "acting NOBLE", but they still do that, do u know y ?

May b u got no brain to understand this kind of problem, ask u also not use !

May b u will say they stupid !
Because u r those kind of pple who selling away you n your next generation future freedom for 'some form of return' at very very cheap price, n still though that u r very clever, somemore said pple act noble.

Jerome said...

I agree.I like your blog because its informative.Thanks for the information in your current post.

Anyway how do I find out what's singapore's ministers' pay ?
I went to google search and found this website.

Is it true ?

Jerome said...

If that's true then I think they are overpaid.

Anonymous said...

It's not uncommon for Government-linked companies to give away 9-12 months' bonus, even during the bad years.

However, not all enjoy such previleges ... you must be one of the blue-eyed boys or girls taken fancy by the higher gods.

I heard that even NTUC, where moneys are from workers, also give away generous bonuses like that. Not enough, just increase the union fees lor ...

But then, they act NOBLE lah ... tell you these people can earn a hundred times more if they are employed in the private sector.

They are only getting peanuts...

volunteer said...

To :whatever party those not really loyal human supporters,

Dog will not bite its master, especially the really loyal dog !

From : stop insulting animals asso.