“If you’re apolitical like BuffLord95, you’d think that “Manifesto” is one of X-Men’s nemeses, and PAP is now creating a task force to fight against evil mutants in Singapore, possibly helmed by Minister Lawrence Wong.” – George Yang 2020
Now, I might not be the BuffLord95 in question, but I’m certainly as apolitical as this fabled legend of George Yang. So small wonder why ‘Manifesto’ sounds more like a Harry Potter spell to me than, say, politics.
Manifesto Magicupo. Sorry, couldn’t resist.
Oh it worked.
Lest you’re unaware (like me), a manifesto, to put it simply, is like a goal set out for the country by a political party (before the election), and there’s usually a slogan with it. President Donald Trump’s own rendition of a tagline, for instance, is the famous MAGA:
Make America Great Again.
But here’s the thing; what is PAP’s own manifesto ahead of the upcoming elections, and is its slogan something cool like MSG:
Make Singapore Great (Again)?
Well, let’s find out.
10 Facts About PAP’s Manifesto Summarised & Simplified for You
1. This Manifesto is Different From Previous Years
Unlike the usual manifestos, this year’s version is different because it’s not one to “keep Singapore going”, but to overcome a crisis. In fact, it’d be a crisis of a generation.
PM Lee said, “The central focus of this manifesto is how we will work together to overcome this crisis of a generation.”
“As always, the PAP stands with Singaporeans, serving in solidarity. We will not let you or Singapore down. We will work with you to bring everyone safely through the storm. We also have clear plans for Singapore’s future beyond this crisis. We will invest in our people, rebuild our economy and strengthen our society. Together, we will emerge stronger again.”
2. The Slogan of This Year’s Manifesto
No, it isn’t to “Make Singapore Great Again”. Sadly.
Instead, it’s “Our Lives, Our Jobs, Our Future”.
The central theme of PAP’s manifesto is to work together to “overcome this crisis of a generation.”
To achieve it, they promise to go through with the following points:
3. Public Health And Safety
The People’s Association of Singapore assures residents that it will take health concerns very seriously.
Relevant healthcare industries will be equipped accordingly, and Covid-19 testing, as well as tracing capabilities, will be given higher priority.
Public hygiene will be improved through an island-wide campaign, and everyone will be able to obtain a sufficient supply of protective items (such as face masks).
Migrant workers will also be attended to, and new migrant worker residences will be constructed with novel operating models and enhanced standards.
4. Creating Jobs And Acquiring Skills Together
In this time of crisis, PAP has deemed employment rates to be a top priority in the economic sector.
To protect and create jobs, the political party aims to equip Singaporeans with the necessary skill sets, in order to take advantage of new opportunities and growing sectors. 100,000 new jobs will also be created.
To assist in the accessing of job opportunities, satellite career centres will be set up in all HDB towns. Programmes for career conversion will be ramped up, and safeguards for jobseekers will be strengthened under the Fair Consideration Framework.
Financial incentives will be provided for employers to hire/redeploy local workers.
Workers aged 40-60, senior workers, young job seekers, lower-wage workers and workers with disabilities will all be given additional boosts to aid in their career prospects.
5. Transforming And Growing The Economy
Businesses will also receive support from the government. The political party promises to “build a dynamic, resilient and responsive economy, no matter what happens”.
Digital transformation of all industry sectors will be accelerated, and necessary support and promotion will be granted to certain sections.
Green lane arrangements for safe travel with other countries will be established, and resources will be diversified.
In the future, the government will continue to assist needy families with packages, grants, vouchers and subsidies.
Detailed support will be lent to families with:
- Children with special needs
- Pre-schooling children
Seniors will also be cared for aptly so that they can “retire comfortably with good health”.
Singapore’s healthcare capacity will also be expanded to boost access to medical treatment and care for all.
7. Building A Strong And Resilient Society Together
The political party assures Singaporeans that it will build a strong and resilient society, one whose people help each other.
Financial support will be provided to social service agencies, and a multi-cultural, multi-religious society will form.
Current surpluses and past reserves will also be used accordingly to protect the welfare of Singaporeans and safeguard the future for our children and subsequent generations.
The political party also promises to make sustainability a part of our daily lives.
Apart from the deployment of more solar panels to produce clean energy, greenhouse emissions will also be cut down. One million trees, as well as new mangrove areas, will be planted to preserve the nation’s carbon sinks.
More nature will be brought to the city, including parks and enhanced green corridors and park connectors.
New concepts of sustainable living will be introduced, and local food production will be significantly increased. Home improvement and neighbourhood upgrading initiatives will also be implemented.
9. Building Our City Together
The following projects will also be made a reality in years to come:
- Smart Nation and the 5G Network
- Tuas Megaport
- Changi T5
- Greater Southern Waterfront and Paya Lebar Redevelopment
- Punggol Digital District and Jurong Lake District
- Doubling our rail networks with the Cross Island Line and the Thomson-East Coast Line
10. Overcoming Together
The manifesto ends off with the following statement:
“We are sailing into the storm of a century. But we will face it with unity, resilience, solidarity and fortitude.
“We will work with you to seize new opportunities, re-shape our future and build a sparkling city of tomorrow. We will overcome this crisis, triumph over adversity and emerge stronger.
“We will do all this and more because we have the Singapore spirit and each other.”
And if I may say so, it does sound politically correct enough.
You can view the full manifesto here.
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