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  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Medishield-life turns out to be a scam that robs poor people in Singapore?
      [Image: mJwIwtW.jpg]http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/he...ay-feature
      Sadly, I read in the papers that the rich who can afford the highest level medical insurance plans are probably the biggest/ worst exploiters of the compulsory national healthcare insurance scheme in Singapore. As it is reported in 'New riders for IP plans will include co-pay feature' [ST, 08 March 2018]: "People with full riders have bills that are 60 per cent higher than those without riders." http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/he...ay-feature

      As I understand, the 60% difference refers to the difference between already rich people: i.e. the rich (own just medishield-life integrated plans) vs the ultra rich (own insurance riders in ADDITION to the integrated plans). As compared to the poor (only have compulsory basic 'medishield-life'), the difference cannot be more stark since as the example highlighted by Mr Gilbert Goh (appended below or at https://www.facebook.com/goh.gilbert/pos...nref=story ) some poor Singaporeans skip medical treatments due to inability to afford transportation costs. Having more comfortable care at government and private hospitals may also mean that richer patients live longer and thus stand to benefit from the concept of 'pre-funding' since poor people finding it hard to physically transport themselves to medical care locations implicitly benefit less from the compulsory national healthcare insurance scheme since they will die earlier for reasons of transport costs difficulties and other obvious benefits ONLY available to private integrated medishield-life insurance coverage such as pre/post hospitalization care, cancer immunotherapy, prosthesis benefits, ability to port care benefits to other parts of the world (evacuation costs, overseas treatments) etc. 'Role of pre-funding' https://www.moh.gov.sg/content/moh_web/h...ding-.html 

      I thus will not be surprised that based upon the concept of 'pre-funding', the shortened life expectancy of poor people, the ability of the rich to afford higher quality/ comfort care / greater options, medishield-life has inadvertently (?or by design?) become a means by which the poor are now implicitly if not explicitly funding the healthcare/ treatment costs for rich people. 

      My suggestion to this obviously obtuse, inhumane, unjust and untenable system of exploiting the poor is to stop any one subscribing to any integrated shield plan or worse still, insurance plan riders (conferring further medical fees waivers) from receiving any subsidies usually accruable to the basic medishield-life portion of the insurance plan. To provide subsidies to anyone who can afford to subscribe to integrated shield plans is a travesty of justice akin to funding private taxi fares (which is an obvious luxury as compared to public transport (bus/ MTR fares)), to fund people subscribing to any integrated medishield-life plan with an additional rider would be like providing subsidies for people who want to own their own automobiles (just because they under declare their income tax or report a small dwelling place as their residential address): an obvious squander of government funds and worse: complicity in the robbery/ exploitation of the poor since as earlier described, any person who gets a deliberate/ unfair 60% (upwards) upperhand in the nett 'access' to common pool medishield-life funds obtained under the communist/ socialist concept of compulsory 'pre-funding' reveals the gross injustice implicit in the design of medishield-life that blindly subsidises holders of private healthcare insurance plans; which obviously will erode national cohesion and trust in government in the long run.

      Instead of disbursing medishield-life subsidies liberally (indiscriminately) like one distracts children with cheap candies, a more targeted carrot-stick based upon health consciousness can keep overall cohort medicals claims costs low: e.g. maintaining a low % body fat (below 15% for males and below 25% for females), performing well in fitness tests (modeled after universally used military fitness test like IPPT, with swimming/ cycling alternatives), non-smoking status are all very good (anti-diabetes) options to consider for substantive 'earned' waivers from the costs of premiums for compulsory medishield-life which can be implemented on a national level, as well as the total banning of the use of riders, would make the basic medishield-life scheme a more trusted medical insurance scheme whereby the concept of healthcare insurance returns to the original philosophy of insuring calamities which are unpreventable by doing everything within control to avoid the avoidable (e.g. type 2 diabetes due to sedentary lifestyle, high% body fat causing diabetes etc). Rather than a sneaky way for the rich to siphon $$$ from the poor to fund their own irresponsible and lavish lifestyles in the ultimate tragedy of the commons and let Singapore go bankrupt due to the lawless, free for all, self-serving buffet syndrom mentality, the result of an extremely poorly planned and executed national healthcare insurance policy.
      =========================

      From:
      https://www.facebook.com/goh.gilbert/pos...nref=story
      Visited a 50-year-old man who skips his medical appointment twice because he could not gather enough transport money to visit the doctor. He is suspected to have initial stage of cancer of the pancreas and liver. He lost about 30 kg from his previous weight and looks jaundiced.
      He also owes a few months of utilities, rental and town council charges but feels most worried about the rental debts as HDB has dropped by already to check on him. He is afraid of losing the home though I assured him that so far HDB has not go hard on rental defaultors unlike purchased flat owners.
      Surprisingly, SSO has rejected his welfare application citing that he still has a son who is now working as an intern earning $1200/month. His Malaysian wife is currently back in Malaysia undergoing dialysis for her diabetic condition. Of course, the SSO wants him to get back to work but his ill health and frail body are not helping him much.
      He is currently awaiting approval from Comcare side after visiting his MP.
      I left Jefri after leaving him with a small amount of cash for his meals and assured him that we will assist in one way or another.
      A regular donor has pledged $500 to offset the $600-over rental default and someone has already paid $100 into the SP bill. At least he will have a roof over his head as he nurses his health slowly back to normal.
      Apologise that the video is abit soft and last five minutes.
      Poor People's Campaign: a ground-up community initiative to improve the living condition of the poor among us.
      =======================
      Everyone must compulsorily conform to the concept of 'pre-funding', however, ultimately, it is the poor who paradoxically subsidise the rich since the rich (leveraging upon insurance 'riders') get to claim 60% more (even after proration is considered):
      Reply from MOH
      27 Nov 2013, Straits Times
      Role of pre-funding
      WE THANK Mr David Boey ("Problems with pre-funding"; Nov 19), Ms Maria Loh Mun Foong ("Merits of pre-funding"; last Thursday) and Mr Tan Kin Lian ("Pre-funding not feasible for MediShield Life"; Forum Online, Monday) for sharing their views on the concept of pre-funding for MediShield.
      The letters from Mr Boey and Ms Loh may have created the wrong impression that the proposed pre-funding concept will require the younger generation to cross-subsidise the current elderly.
      For MediShield, the pre-funded amount contributed by each cohort is set aside for the future use of their own respective cohorts, and not used to cross-subsidise the current elderly.
      To address concerns over affordability of premiums among the current cohort of elderly Singaporeans, the Government has indicated its plans to provide help for the older generation of Singaporeans.
      As noted by Mr Tan, health-care costs tend to be higher for the elderly. This, plus the effects of medical advancements and changing expectations, will put further upward pressure on future premiums as we age.
      For this reason, it will be even more important to set aside some premiums in advance, or pre-funding, to address concerns of premium affordability during old age.
      With pre-funding, members pay higher premiums during their working ages and, in return, can receive rebates to offset their own future premiums when they grow old.
      With the ongoing review and enhancement of MediShield to MediShield Life, one of the key issues the MediShield Life Review Committee hopes to engage the public on is increasing the role of pre-funding. The committee welcomes all Singaporeans to provide their feedback or sign up for upcoming discussion sessions through http://www.medishieldlife.sg
      Philip Sim
      Deputy Director
      Corporate Communications
      Ministry of Health
      https://www.moh.gov.sg/content/moh_web/h...ding-.html

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Sim Tian said: Not true..medical bills can bankrupt anyone rich or not depending on the condition and length.


      Just because medical bills can bankrupt anybody doesn't mean that gahmen should subsidise healthcare insurance for the rich, especially those who merely game the system and PRETEND to be poor but are actually very rich based upon their purchase of expensive healthcare insurance riders and enhanced healthcare insurance plans... once again, pls don't misuse future claims of high healthcare costs as a weapon to rob the poor in Singapore by increasing GST just to pay for the rich to use expensive private hospital VIP suites when they are ill. 

      Since gahmen has already mentioned that class C (lowest class) medical treatments are as good a standard as A1 (highest) class (see link/ pict below) treatment minus bells and whistles like air-con, private TV, telephone and single toilets, anyone demanding extra luxuries should be expected to pay MORE especially for healthcare insurance premiums.

      The only REAL INSURANCE (defence) against astronomical healthcare costs is firstly to keep healthy and fit by regular medical check ups and % body fat analysis since the occurence of diabetes and subsequent sequelae such as cancers, strokes and heart disease are closely related to the chronic (silent) suffering from hypertension, Diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking etc, all essentially related to the lack of exercise (pls see http://sgtalk.org/mybb/Thread-MECHANISM-...g-activity for the mechanism by which regular areobic exercise prevents diabetes, cancers and heart disease).

      Only persons with proven congenital genetic diseases should be exempted from paying hospital bills to the extent that their conditions are solely related to their congenital conditions and not due to failure to exercise or maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

      It is better for an irresponsible individual to become bankrupt from high healthcare costs to control/ reverse (rarely) the damage done from years of neglect of personal health than for THE WHOLE COUNTRY GO BANKRUPT paying for an individual case of personal irresponsibility and indescreation in overpriced and outlandish private hospital settings and all citizens fall into depression.

      Except to be adopted by populist and corrupt politicians out to win by hook or by crook/ buy votes, your suggestion is rather myopic and remains detrimental in the long run to the entire nation.

      [Image: fnKhGp9.jpg]https://www.moh.gov.sg/content/moh_web/h...rgery.html

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Same topic at another forum/ thread:
      https://forums.hardwarezone.com.sg/eat-d...t113160231

      Tremere (HWZ) said:You write in to ST and MOH with your suggestion lor.


      Will write to my MP first.

      MOH must STOP SUBSIDISING unmeritorious needs so as to keep GST (regressive tax) low.

      In fact, Heng Swee Keat has said that even with 2% increase in GST, the 2% increase is projected to be INSUFFICIENT for healthcare needs...

      Thus there is an urgent need to trim fat from the system, people who leverage upon medishield-life integrated plans (enhanced versions sold by private insurers linked and in addition to basic medishield-life plans) should be considered well to do people and given ZERO medishield-life basic subsidies.

      In any case, they all leverage upon their private 'integrated' plans and riders as well to rob the system of 20-25% higher claims 'Insurers want all patients to pay part of hospital bills' ST pg A1, 7 March 2018., thus subsidising who can afford an enhanced basic medishield-life insurance plan ('integrated plan') should immediately be BANNED from receiving any basic level premium subsidies and should their higher claims pan out, then they should also be charged a 20-25% surcharge on the medishield life basic portion of their integrated healthcare insurance plan.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • MOH should stop sponsoring the rich at the expense of the poor.

      It is unjust for Ministry of Health (Singapore)(MOH) to be blindly subsidising medishield-life premiums REGARDLESS of whether a person has an integrated (upgraded/ enhanced) medishield-life healthcare insurance plan (+/- riders) because many integrated-life plan holders are actually/ relatively much more wealthy people who DO NOT DESERVE any medishield-life subsidies even if they satisfy the MOH sole 2 criteria towards their award: namely: low income and low annual value of residence address (the latter 2 criteria are easily faked by under-declaring one's salary scale and replacing one's residential address with a relative who stays in a cheaper/ smaller public housing unit).

      In addition, it is reported that person's with medishield-life integrated plans, with or without riders submit 20-25% higher claims on a per-capita basis upon the common pool medishield-life insurance fund. (see report: 'Insurers want all patients to pay part of hospital bills' as appended below).

      MOH must thus establish equitability and be prudent in its use of government funds by DISALLOWING any citizen owning ANY integrated medishield-life healthcare insurance plan from receiving ANY form of medishield-life insurance subsidy whatsoever at all, regardless of how low their income level or registered residential address (which at times may be outdated or deliberately faked (so as to obtain increased undeserved benefits other government subsidy schemes such as the annual GST credits, CHAS healthcare subsidies scheme for instance)).

      In fact, those who own any form of enhancement over and above the plain vanilla basic medishield-life national healthcare insurance plan should either have their medishield-life basic claims payouts reduced by 20-25% or have their basic premiums raised by 20-25% in line with this cohort increased claims record in order not to place an excessive economic burden upon the poor who in comparison, make 20-25% REDUCED claims upon the basic medishield-life insurance fund pool as compared to the well-insured rich who leverage the generous payouts of their integrated (enhanced/ private) healthcare insurance plans to make 20-25% higher claims out of the national common pool.

      A person who can afford to UPGRADE his basic compulsory medishield-life national healthcare insurance plan into an integrated (enhanced) one and even more so, add on riders to afford either 100% waiver of all medical costs or special VIP privileges cannot possibly be described as poor even if he claims to live in a small house or reports a low income. In a police state like Singapore, all insurers have to be licensed to operate in Singapore and the government knows exactly whom and how many people own integrated medishield-life healthcare insurance plans: it is thus unconscionable for the Singapore government to continue upon its immoral ways of sponsoring the rich at the expense of the poor.

      I would thus like to propose that the MOH:
      Firstly: suspend all medishield-life basic level subsidies to anybody owning an integrated medishield-life plan or higher,
      Secondly: monitor the claims records submitted by the 6 healthcare insurance providers of the integrated medishield-life insurance plans for their claims record per-capita upon the common basic medishield-life insurance pool to see if the claims per capita remain 20-25% higher: if so, then perhaps a levy upon all private insurers (e.g. Prudential, Great Eastern, NTUC, AIA etc) equal to the increased claims history of their customers should be imposed so as not to burden the majority poor who are by compulsion, also forced to pay premiums to the common pool only to benefit the rich who leverage upon integrated/ enhanced insurance plan riders to make larger claims to the detriment of the remaining poor.

      Over generous subsidies by MOH to the rich and wealthy is the main reason why Singapore's GST (/VAT) (a regressive tax) is scheduled to increase between 2021 and 2025 from 7% to 9% http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/si...1-and-2025 MOH should stop just throwing $$$ at the problem, use medical subsidies as a vehicle for vote buying or medishield-life subsidied as a siphon of $$$ to the rich. Excessive healthcare consumption shouldn't be encouraged and instead of incentivising the purchase of healthcare insurance plans, MOH should incentivise heath and fitness attainment in society by providing subsidies based upon IPPT scores, % body fat levels, resting heart rate levels etc, all of which are parameters correlated with REDUCED healthcare costs claims. MOH should thus stop navel gazing and its wasteful, regressive, inequitable and ineffective policies involving the throwing of good money after bad.


      --------------------------------------
      'Insurers want all patients to pay part of hospital bills' ST pg A1, 7 March 2018.
      [Image: s85P0J3.jpg]

      Proof that MOH uses only the blunt and inaccurate measure of declared income for the disbursement of subsidies, these criteria can easily be satisfied by false/ under-declaration of income and residential address. The ownership of coverage enhancements such as an integrated plan and even riders should be considered a sign of wealth on par with the weightage of annual value of residence by residential address being the current approximate measure. The ownership of enhanced insurance plans is also less likely a measure subject to fake/ corrupt reporting since insurance companies are audited and also by protocol forward proportionate claims to the MOH medishield-life basic fund pool, unlike the easily achieved misrepresentation of relative's HDB address as personal residential address to corruptly receive increased government prescribed welfare credits.
      Singapore MOH medishield-life 2015 age specific premium, subsidy table for various income group brackets.
      [Image: 1464051546960.jpg]
      Alt img source URL: https://imgur.com/QybxnEM.jpg

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • (Just like Tobacco smoking related Lung Cancer), T2 Diabetes is a Voluntary Lifestyle Choice Disease.

      (Ignorance, Mental-Stress and Ill-discipline are major subsidiary causative factors as well)
      [Image: slide_8.jpg]
      1st principles 1st:
      Definition: Diabetes mellitus type 2 is a long-term metabolic disorder that is characterized by high blood sugar,insulin resistance, and relative lack of insulin. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diabetes_mellitus_type_2

      Blood sugar = calories, aka energy. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_energy)
      Law of conservation of energy:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservation_of_energy*energy can neither be created nor destroyed; rather, it can only be transformed from one form to another

      Majority of people with T2 diabetes have a very high % of body fat and a low basal metabolism rate.

      The basal metabolism rate is influenced by the % of skeletal muscle a person has, (obviously, the % muscle to fat is lower in people with a high % body fat). People with a low % muscle have a low basal metabolic rate and are thus more likely to get fat (or are already fat).

      The purpose of Insulin is to help cells absorb glucose in blood (especially fat and liver cells) since brain and muscle cells admit glucose much more readily where necessary (especially when exercising).

      Resistance to Insulin by cells occurs primarily because cellular energy stores (as glucose/ glycogen/ fat) are already full and cannot increase storage any further without bursting or tearing apart the cell wall/ cell architecture. Fat cells have the highest energy storage capacity so usually, insulin resistance happens when fat cells have very low or reduced vacant storage capacity. Just as a bucket filled to the brim with water will overflow upon further influx, diabetes is a condition where the fat cells are filled to capacity and are thus unable to absorb blood glucose (energy) levels further without causing structural damage to themselves. Insulin resistance in this case is thus a product of lassitude and gluttony and not a genetic disease.

      Lifestyle and work also plays a big part since only well trained (/skilled) muscles (and perhaps other cells) can utilise fat as an energy source at high stress/ aerobic intensity (higher VO2 max levels etc). Many cosmopolitan denizens have high stress occupations for which they are physically poorly trained to handle, even should it be a white collar job in nature. Just as a 100m sprint (high VO2max activity in midst of high fight/flight hormone levels) consumes mostly glucose as energy source, a high stress/ toxic work environment results in muscle and other cells preferentially using glucose as energy substrate rather than fat as would be the case in a more tranquil/ harmonious work environment (Insufficient sleep/ rest also causes fight/flight hormone action resulting in higher glucose rather than fat metabolism). Low blood glucose causes hunger pangs and in the context of a hectic work environment, means more binging on fatty foods and sugary drinks to cure hunger pangs quickly as well as alcohol and tobacco products which are all short term stimulants but with long term detriment. Such a lifestyle leads to diabetes at best and a heart attack/ stroke/ cancer in most people which will most likely end their careers and perhaps bankrupt either themselves or their country from the stratospheric healthcare costs of providing care and concern for 40-50 years of ignorance, poor lifestyle choices / ill discipline.

      PS:
      Other consequences of a sedentary lifestyle include:
      Obstructive Sleep Apnoea which contributes to diabetes: poor respiratory muscle tone coupled with a big tummy and fat blocking the respiratory tract causes deep sleep to be interrupted by persistently cycling airway blockage (snoring) when muscles relax and the already partially fat blocked airways become completely blocked/ compressed by fatty tissues (suffocation resulting in repeated subconscious micro awakenings during sleep).

      The poor state of rest results in increased stress hormones (catecholamines) circulating in the blood which in themselves, besides antagonising insulin action, also raise the blood pressure (Hypertension) and shift the energy metabolism choice from fat to glucose: resulting in poor performance (repeated hunger pangs) and even more fat accumulation since high glucose is extremely toxic to blood vessels and especially the kidney: so fat accumulation becomes a one way street, increasing with every meal but not being expanded off in between. 

      Diabetes and Hypertension are both partners in crime (mutual accelerants) because they both cause blood vessel inflammation which most likely further increase blood catecholamine levels which both serve to accelerate one another resulting in even more severe (vivious cycle) blood vessel inflammation: both of which are the primary cause of heart attacks, strokes and perhaps even cancer too.

      Ignorance, Mental-Stress and Ill-discipline are thus the primary cause of T2 Diabetes and to be blamed for the stratospheric healthcare costs and high morbidity suffered by modern day society citizens today.

      In conclusion, all people with a high body fat % (and BMI above 18.5) https://www.builtlean.com/2010/08/03/ide...age-chart/ need to do more physical exercise and avoid a sedentary lifestyle to improve their skeletal muscle quantity, quality and tone to improve their basal metabolic rate (and personal productivity levels) and thus keep their % body fat below the prescribed levels of 15% for males and 25% for females to avoid the conditions of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, obstructive sleep apnoea, high cholesterol, high mental/ work stress levels etc which place an increasingly unaffordable burden on healthcare costs for all.


      References:
      [Image: Ideal-Body-Fat-Percentage-Chart1.jpg]https://www.builtlean.com/2010/08/03/ide...age-chart/
      1 in 3 Singaporeans suffer from sleep apnea: Study: CNA17Mar2016: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/sing...dy-8137824
      Start now to prevent and manage chronic diseases: ST27Sept2016: "As of 2010, more than half of Singapore's adult population between 18 and 69 years old have high cholesterol, four in 10 are overweight or obese, a quarter have prediabetes or diabetes and about one in five has hypertension."http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/he...c-diseases
      1 in 10 stroke patients here aged under 50: ST, 19Nov2016: "Medical conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol can make a person more likely to get a stroke, say doctors." http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/1-...d-under-50

      May not be diabetes, but his symptoms still suggests something wrong with his brain blood flow/blood vessles e.g.: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transient_ischemic_attack ):
      [Image: isetO2w.gif]

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • City Harvest Lenient verdict shows Judiciary is Sleeping on the job by taking Anti-Terrorism message with a light pinch of salt.

      [Image: city-harvest-leaders-sentences---3660682.png]

      This association of the concept of 'agent' as a solely commercial / licensed professional limitation is a much too NARROW definition.

      By all accounts, Kong Hee proclaimed himself to be the 'agent' of God to City Harvest Church (CHC). Kong Hee was the primary mastermind in both GROOMING his flock to accept his unquestionable authority as well as masterminding the CORRUPT transfer of church funds towards the illicit and covert objective of satisfying his wife's childhood dreams of becoming an international sex-bomb pop-music icon.

      The high court has thus OVERLOOKED the highly culpable aspect of 'GROOMING' as well as self proclamation by the pastor to be the 'agent/messenger ' of God, which in the minds of the impressionable or lay public, is likely to cause them to be in a position of GREAT VULNERABILITY and thus part with LARGE SUMS OF MONEY.

      These ILLICITLY obtained finances obtained through the deceit of MISREPRESENTING religious texts can then be transferred towards even more nefarious causes such as mass killings and other inhuman terrorism related causes.

      Religion based terrorist commonly recruit followers and fund their attacks on innocent civilians by GROOMING illiterate or unsuspecting individuals into perpetuating their extremist ideologies by representing themselves as religious authority figures, aka 'agents/ representatives/ prophets of God'

      The ability of religious leaders to brainwash and indoctrinate is certainly much GREATER than any licensed professional such as an accountant, lawyer/ doctor etc since none of the listed licensed professionals ordinarily bring the concept of the AFTERLIFE into the picture.

      The quantum of monies corruptly misused is a good clue to the severity of crime committed.

      For the judiciary to navel gaze and insists upon sentencing LENIENCY merely based upon their limited and sudden knee jerk re-definition of the term 'agent' is to commit an error of judgement akin to missing the forest for the trees.

      The Judiciary has totally overlooked the issue of GROOMING which ought DOUBLE the culpability of Kong Hee's crime.

      The City Harvest Church High Court judgement is thus a MISTAKE that society will only live to pay the price for as religious leaders with terror objectives read it as a judicial LOOPHOLE/ OBSOLESCENCE, and encouragement for them to achieve their destructive, ethnic cleansing / genocidal outcomes.

      ======================

      Singapore
      Why judges ruled to reduce the jail terms of City Harvest Church leaders
      The High Court, in a split decision, convicted Kong and his five accomplices of a reduced charge - the least aggravated form of Criminal Breach of Trust for which the punishment is up to seven years’ jail.

      (Clockwise from top left): Tan Ye Peng, Kong Hee, John Lam, Chew Eng Han, Sharon Tan and Serina Wee. (Photo: Ngau Kai Yan)

      By Vanessa Paige Chelvan
      07 Apr 2017 09:49PM (Updated: 15 Jun 2017 12:36PM) Share this content

      SINGAPORE: They were found guilty of misappropriating S$50 million of church funds - a record amount in Singapore’s legal history - but six City Harvest Church leaders saw their sentences reduced on Friday (Apr 7), in a twist to a long-running case that first went before the courts way back in mid-2013.

      image: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/image/8716804/0x0/1200/1262/89c4630ee651caad18a647d31055fa32/fc/city-harvest-leaders-sentences---3660682.png
      So why did the three-judge panel rule as it did?

      In 2015, the six members - Kong Hee, Tan Ye Peng, Chew Eng Han, John Lam, Serina Wee and Sharon Tan - were convicted of the most aggravated form of Criminal Breach of Trust (CBT) under the Penal Code: CBT by public servant, or by banker, merchant, or agent.

      Section 409 of the Penal Code states that:

      Whoever, being in any manner entrusted with property, or with any dominion over property, in his capacity of a public servant, or in the way of his business as a banker, a merchant, a factor, a broker, an attorney or an agent, commits criminal breach of trust in respect of that property, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 20 years, and shall also be liable to fine.

      However the High Court, in a split decision, convicted Kong and his five accomplices of a reduced charge - the least aggravated form of CBT for which the punishment is up to seven years’ jail.

      For a conviction under the aggravated CBT charge under section 409 of the Penal Code to stand, the elements of the offence must be made out:

      1. The accused (namely, Kong Hee, Tan Ye Peng and John Lam) were entrusted with control over CHC’s funds.

      2. This entrustment was in the way of Kong, Ye Peng and Lam’s business as agents.

      3. Money from CHC’s funds were misappropriated for various unauthorised purposes as part of a conspiracy to misuse CHC’s funds.

      4. The accused abetted each other by engaging in the above conspiracy to misuse CHC’s funds; and

      5. The accused acted dishonestly in doing so.

      Majority of the panel - Judge of Appeal Chao Hick Tin and Justice Woo Bih Li - decided the prosecution had not proved the second element of the offence.

      Their decision largely came down to the wording of section 409, hinging on the definition of the word “agent” and whether Kong and the co-conspirators could be said to be “in the business” of agents.

      The decision was also influenced by the judges’ interpretation of the law. They said an agent under section 409 must refer to “professional agents” as opposed to “casual agents”.

      The wording of the law “(cannot) conceivably encompass a person (a casual agent) who has been appointed the treasurer of a society and by virtue of that appointment is holding onto the funds of the society”, the judges said.

      Section 409 must refer to a “professional agent”, “one who professes to offer his agency services to the community at large and from which he makes his living”, they said. “It refers to a commercial activity done for profit.”

      In coming to their decision, JA Chao and Justice Woo abandoned a precedent which has been applied in Singapore for the past 40 years, to draw this distinction: To fall under the scope of section 409, the agent must be “external” to the company or organisation that is entrusting the property to him.

      Kong, Tan Ye Peng and Lam were directors of the CHC board, which were “internal” roles, the judges deemed.

      “While a director undoubtedly holds an important position in a company or organisation, it cannot be said that a person by becoming a director has offered his services as an agent to the community at large and makes his living as an agent.”

      JA Chao and Justice Woo acknowledged their decision would upset the state of affairs, but said: “This does not, however, mean that we can ignore the wording of the section.”

      Between the most aggravated form of CBT (section 409) and least aggravated (section 406), there are another two sections covering other aggravated forms of CBT - sections 407 and 408 - for which the punishment is up to 15 years’ jail.

      “We agree that it is intuitively unsatisfactory,” the judges said, that “(under sections 407 and 408), a clerk, servant, carrier or warehouse keeper would be liable for an aggravated offence. This does not, however, mean that we can ignore the wording of the section”. “If an interpretation of a statutory provision is erroneous … it must be corrected notwithstanding how entrenched it may have become.”

      Justice Chan Seng Onn disagreed with the other judges.

      The convictions of Chew, Ye Peng, Serina and Sharon for falsification of accounts were upheld.

      Source: CNA/xk
      Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/why-judges-ruled-to-reduce-the-jail-terms-of-city-harvest-church-8716810

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Poor subsidise the rich in Singapore healthcare costs landscape:

      Gahmen subsidises medishield-life premiums based upon residence type based on registered IC address, but many rich Singaporeans can circumvent this categorization by owning a private residence under either a relative's name or else a corporate registration ownership vehicle so that the gahmen has the WRONG idea how rich one is, being deceived by the IC address declared by the citizen.

      The appended straits Times report (highlighted in bold) states that super-rich subscribers who can afford insurance riders charge 20-25% higher claims for insurance payouts as opposed to ordinary-rich those WITHOUT insurance riders which means the super-rich utilize medishield-life insurance payouts 25% more than the rich and that the most cunning super-rich people receive the MOST undeserved benifits by gaming Singapore healthcare subsidy systems and in fact robbing the poor of healthcare access.

      This massive loophole needs to be immediately closed.

      Those who can afford any insurance riders or additional add ons like "integrated plans" should not receive ANY gahmen sponsored medishield-life insurance subsidies just like only exceptionally deserving cases get subsidies for private vehicle travel (legally blind amputee, brittle bones liable to be hurt when travelling by bus even in wheelchair, quadriplegic and cannot even operate electric wheelchair etc).


      ===================

      Panel suggests doing away with medical insurance riders
      Premiums for private hospital plans could soon rise by 9 to 15 per cent.
      An operating theatre at Farrer Park Hospital. Premiums for private hospital plans could soon rise by 9 to 15 per cent.ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

      PUBLISHED. OCT 14, 2016, 5:00 AM SGT
      Guidelines for medical fees also among ideas by task force to tackle rising cost of insurance
      Salma KhalikSenior Health Correspondent 
      Lorna TanInvest Editor/Senior Correspondent 
      A task force set up to look at the rising cost of insurance in Singapore has suggested sweeping measures such as doing away with riders that enable insured patients to get away with paying nothing towards their own treatment.

      It has also suggested that insurers have a list of preferred health providers that charge reasonable fees and offer their services to customers. Patients can still opt for other doctors, but this could affect the amount of their bill covered by insurance.

      Medical insurance claims have been rising, and premiums for integrated plans, that sit atop MediShield Life, are set to rise. They had been frozen for a year, but are poised to go up once the moratorium is lifted next month. The Straits Times understands that premiums for private hospital plans could then rise by 9 to 15 per cent.

      Recommendations to keep costs down
      More people making health insurance claims means that premiums have been rising over the years. Here is what the Health Insurance Task Force has recommended to keep costs down:

      1. Establish a set of guidelines for medical fees, so that people can get a better estimate of how much their treatments should cost.

      2. Make clearer the process through which insurers can raise issues such as inappropriate or excessive treatment to the relevant authorities.

      3. Improve insurance procedures and product features. This includes:

      • Using panels of preferred healthcare providers to manage medical costs through agreements on fees.

      • Make sure co-insurance and/or deductibles are included in the product design, so that some co-payment is still necessary. This is to prevent overconsumption.

      • Get insurers to approve claims for treatment and bills before the actual procedure is carried out, so that issues of inappropriate treatment and high charges can be addressed from the start.

      4. Educate consumers on their available options and the corresponding costs, so as to reduce information asymmetry.

      The task force, which was set up by the Life Insurance Association (LIA) of Singapore and included members from the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), also suggested medical fee benchmarks or guidelines to reduce overcharging. Guidelines are currently not allowed here as they are seen as anti- competition.

      The task force also proposed tweaking current practice to make it easier for insurers to raise suspected inappropriate or excessive medical treatments with the Singapore Medical Council, the professional watchdog.

      The issue of riders, which cover the entire medical bill, clearly bothered the panel which noted that patients with riders run up bills that are 20 to 25 per cent higher than those who have to bear a share of the cost.

      The task force suggested the six insurance companies offering IPs tweak their products so patients pay a share of the bill to prevent the "buffet syndrome", while ensuring that existing policyholders are not put at a disadvantage.

      The task force, headed by Ms Mimi Ho of financial consultancy firm Regulatory Professionals, also urged greater consumer education so people can "actively manage their health and healthcare costs".

      MOH called the report "timely and commendable" and agreed with it on the issue of co-payment.

      It said that co-payment by patients was a key tenet in its healthcare financing framework and it "helps to guard against over-consumption and over-treatment".

      "The absence of any co-payment may encourage over-consumption by some patients and over-servicing or over-charging by some healthcare providers which will eventually increase healthcare costs and insurance premiums for all Singaporeans," it said.

      On the issue of medical fee guidelines, it said it would continue to work with healthcare providers and IP insurers on ways to further improve fee transparency.

      The ministry has recently started revealing the range of fees charged by private hospital and specialists for a large number of common procedures.

      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/panel-suggests-doing-away-with-medical-insurance-riders

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • UNHEALTHY lifestyle habits amongst PAP leaders raise taxation rates for all.
      Only PAP MPs/ MP candidates are bestowed by PA, elite gahmen titles and funds as "advisers to grassroots organisations" (in all INCLUDING opposition MP held constituencies), thus, it is by following the UNHEALTHY habits and lifestyles of their "advisers to grassroots organisations" that many Singaporeans suffer ill health and the attendant stratospherically high societal healthcare costs burden and the increased taxes to fund them.

      "As of 2010, more than half of Singapore's adult population between 18 and 69 years old have high cholesterol, four in 10 are overweight or obese, a quarter have prediabetes or diabetes and about one in five has hypertension."

      Prime minister Lee Hsien Loong (+ entourage) personally queuing up for his favourite (deep-oil) fried chicken wings:
      [Image: yan7.jpg](alt pict view)
      [Image: yan1.jpg](alt img view)http://danielfooddiary.com/2014/06/14/yan/ 
      KBW showing off his $8 urgent heart bypass to bypass life threatening levels of fat and cholesterol had been found built up over the years and blocking his heart arteries.
      [Image: Khaw+Boon+Wan.jpg] https://www.facebook.com/notes/theonlinecitizen/khaw-boon-wan-pays-s8-for-bypass-surgery/446633433963
      Finance minister Heng Swee Kiat boast sleeping 4hrs/night, which probably resulted in his near fatal stroke no less:
      "Fellow Tampines MP Desmond Choo was also shocked at the news.
      "We've never heard anything like this. To me, he's like Superman," said Mr Choo.
      "The number of hours he works and the kind of attention span he has, it's amazing."
      The 2012 Hougang by-election candidate recalled the days when he worked closely with Mr Heng, whom he sees as a fatherly figure and source of inspiration.
      "During the by-election period, we would discuss issues until 2am and he would ask me to go home," said Mr Choo.
      "'As a candidate, you need rest,' he would tell me while he continued working with activists. When I returned in the morning, at about 6.30am, he'd already be there."
      http://www.tnp.sg/news/singapore/shanmugam-heng-was-carrying-incredible-load
      [Image: maxresdefault.jpg]http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/finance-minister-heng-swee-keat-feeling-great-apologises-for-not-being-able-to-attend-ndp
      PM LHL, too much fried wings/chendol (fatty food) or skipped sleep before presenting NDR2016: a mild, recoverable stroke on stage unless u buy the official explanation of mere physical exhaustion? Is it easier being an Olympic athlete (paid $1m in SG for gold medal) or PM (paid $3m/p.a.): from this simple comparison, i submit that the PM definitely needs more exercise than the medical prescribed minimum of 150mins/week. J Schooling I believe exercises every day of the week. As for the rest of Singapore, diabetes rates (and their consequential medical costs) just keep going up.
      [Image: isetO2w.gif]https://edmwimg.wordpress.com/tag/lee-hsien-loong/page/5/
      [Image: Diabetic-Foot-1.jpg]
      [Image: slide_8.jpg]
      [Image: Lv5ToAs.jpg]

      Quote:1 in 10 stroke patients here aged under 50
      PUBLISHED NOV 19, 2016, 5:00 AM SGT
      Linette Lai
      While older people are far more likely to suffer a stroke, one in 10 stroke patients in Singapore is under 50 years old.
      Medical conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol can make a person more likely to get a stroke, say doctors.
      Smoking, too, puts you at risk.

      Last Saturday, Singaporean businesswoman Linda Koh was found unconscious in her Hong Kong hotel room. The 36-year-old was rushed to hospital, where she died soon after.
      Doctors subsequently found that she had suffered a stroke.
      Her father, Mr Alan Koh, told Chinese newspaper Shin Min Daily News that his daughter had a history of high blood pressure and was taking medication for it.
      Strokes occur when part of the blood supply to the brain is cut off.
      The latest figures from the National Registry of Disease Office show that there were 6,943 cases of strokes in 2014, up from 6,642 the previous year.
      They are the fourth most common cause of death in Singapore, and tend to occur among men.
      The incidence rate for men aged between 35 and 44 who were admitted to public hospitals for stroke in 2014 was 58 per 100,000 people, compared with 24 per 100,000 for women in the same age group.
      Doctors who spoke to The Straits Times said there are rarely any warning signs before a stroke happens.
      "Some strokes may be preceded by severe headaches or neck pain," said Dr Carol Tham, a consultant from the National Neuroscience Institute's neurology department. "Unfortunately, most patients do not have any warning symptoms before the stroke occurs."
      During a stroke, people often experience difficulty speaking and walking, weakness on one side of their bodies, and even temporary blindness.
      Dr Ho King Hee, a neurologist at Gleneagles Hospital Singapore, said strokes that result in sudden death are likely to be due to bleeding in the brain from a ruptured blood vessel, rather than a blockage.
      "If you are older, it means that there is more time for damage (to the blood vessels) to accumulate," he said. "But a stroke can happen at any age."
      He advises people who have conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes to keep them in check.
      Dr Tham added that doctors may also prescribe blood-thinning medication for people whose blood tends to clot.
      "If a person has any symptoms of stroke... he should seek treatment at the emergency department immediately as early treatment can help to reduce the disability caused by strokes," she said.
      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 19, 2016, with the headline '1 in 10 stroke patients here aged under 50'. 
      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/1-in-10-stroke-patients-here-aged-under-50

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Tangsen wrote  Good luck in SG weather


      Depends on physical condition of rider/user. Those with amputations will need to move on wheelchairs which take up a lot of space EVERYWHERE they go and most amputations in elderly /middle age are due to diabetes which is a disease caused by sedentary lifestyle.

      U blame weather, nothing else to blame ah? Singapore has no typhoons/ blizzards, weather not always wet like london n showers pass quickly. No sub zero temperatures nor heat stroke causing summers, nor frozen paths causing slippery surface, and just like SAF NSmen outfield training, is seldom posponed except for few minuted due to midday sun/ lighting warning; u r a sissy, u still dreaming of LKY air-con nation story? That guy was already too comfortable in his IVORY tower (after jailing all dissent) when he said that ... Singapore is so short of $$$ that gahmen now needs to raise taxes... I think better to continue to exercise in the spirit of NS, than to face a traffic jam EVERYWHERE of wheelchair users and make life intolerable for everyone else .

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • At least 40% of Singaporeans are PIRATES /THIEVES.

      "In a separate survey of 1,000 Singaporeans sponsored by industry association CASBAA, about 40 per cent said they were active consumers of pirated content."

      Of the 'innocent' 60%, they do not stream pirated content probably because maybe they have other hobbies not involving internet use or are internet illiterate. Some are also sociopaths who will deny theft even after being caught red handed. Maybe only 30% are really honest and do not regularly use pirated content at all.

      =========
      'Rampant' piracy in Singapore sparks calls for crackdown from Hollywood, sports titans 
      Viewers in Singapore buy legitimate set-top boxes that also allow unauthorised streaming of thousands of movies, TV shows and live sporting events.
      Viewers in Singapore buy legitimate set-top boxes that also allow unauthorised streaming of thousands of movies, TV shows and live sporting events.ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH
      PUBLISHED. DEC 4, 2017, 7:58 AM SGT
      SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - Singapore, which prides itself on being a haven for law and order, is being called a haven for pirating copyrighted programming by entertainment titans such as Walt Disney, HBO, the National Basketball Association and the English Premier League.

      Viewers in the city-state buy legitimate set-top boxes that also allow unauthorised streaming of thousands of movies, TV shows and live sporting events, said the Coalition Against Piracy.

      Its 21 members, including divisions of Sony Corp. and Twenty-First Century Fox Inc, want the government to block the pirating software inside the devices, which are found at local electronics stores and on e-commerce sites such as Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's Lazada.

      "Within the Asia-Pacific region, Singapore is the worst in terms of availability of illicit streaming devices," said Mr Neil Gane, general manager of the Asia-focused coalition, referring to countries where the boxes are considered legal.

      "They have access to hundreds of illicit broadcasts of channels and video-on-demand content."

      Singapore is a focal point in the entertainment industry's campaign to curb piracy in the region.

      Online TV and movie piracy will cost the industry an estimated US$31.8 billion (S$42.87 billion) in global revenue this year, reaching US$51.6 billion by 2022, according to London-based Digital TV Research.

      Related Story
      2 in 5 people in Singapore actively stream pirated content: Study

      The Asia-Pacific region will become the largest for online piracy next year, overtaking North America, the researcher said.

      Singapore ranked ninth in the number of visits per Internet user to piracy websites, according to London-based Muso TNT, which tracks such visits.

      In a separate survey of 1,000 Singaporeans sponsored by industry association CASBAA, about 40 per cent said they were active consumers of pirated content.

      "The piracy here is rampant and shockingly so," said Ms Lise-Anne Stott, Singapore-based head of legal for A+E Networks Asia, a coalition member that offers History, Lifetime and three other channels there.

      The boxes allow Singaporeans to use apps that access programming not shown at home because it's censored, lacks a licensing deal or requires a subscription fee users don't want to pay.

      In some cases, users can stream uncensored versions - with nudity or violence - of locally available shows such as A+E's Vikings.

      "Copyright infringement is not so much about a device or technology as it is about whether that device or technology is used in a manner that is illegal," the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore said in an e-mail. "Users of such devices should therefore ensure that they are accessing content from authorised content providers."

      Some of the devices scraping the Internet for unauthorised content come from Chinese vendors such as Unblock and EVPad.

      The square gadgets can be bought either with the streaming apps already installed for plug-and-pirate use or with embedded links for downloading those apps.

      Tutorials to set them up are found on YouTube and Baidu Inc's online forum.

      The Singapore government said it didn't consider the devices themselves to be illegal. The boxes also can view legally available websites such as YouTube.

      At Sim Lim Square, an electronics market a short drive from the president's official residence, at least 15 retailers sell the set-top boxes for as little as S$100. Many storefronts advertise that these boxes can stream content otherwise unavailable in Singapore.

      Mr Ken Lee, a salesman, said his store sells 10 to 20 boxes on a typical weekend. During major electronics fairs, sales can reach 300 a day, he said.

      Mr Lee said he tells buyers there's nothing unlawful about using the devices. Since the boxes aren't downloading copies of programmes, they aren't violating copyright laws, he said.

      Unblocktech didn't respond to requests for comment. EVPad said in an e-mail that customers decide which apps to download, and it cannot be held responsible.

      The industry's efforts include lobbying the Singapore government to eliminate any confusion about legal uses of the devices and to make it easier to take legal action against companies offering pirated content, said Mr John Medeiros, Hong Kong-based chief policy officer for CASBAA, the coalition's parent organisation.

      "We continue to engage with the industry on their concerns in relation to the popularity of devices that connect televisions to access online content," Singapore's Intellectual Property Office said.

      The coalition also wants Singapore to block streams of illegal content from entering the country. Last year, the country blocked one website for offering illegal downloads.

      Minister for Home Affairs and Law K. Shanmugam said in August that Singapore has "a strong intellectual-property regime which protects innovations comprehensively and effectively".

      The next month, the World Economic Forum ranked Singapore fourth out of 137 countries for protecting intellectual property rights.

      Coalition members Sony Pictures Television Networks Asia and Viacom International Media Networks declined to comment. Walt Disney Co. and HBO Asia didn't respond to requests for comment.

      "This new coalition adds to our efforts to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the NBA and our partners," said Ms Ayala Deutsch, executive vice-president and deputy general counsel for the league, which earns US$2.6 billion annually in broadcast rights from US-based networks alone.

      The English Premier League, which generates at least 1 billion pounds (S$1.82 billion) a year from international media rights, is "currently investigating" suppliers of pirated content in Asia after helping Thai authorities break up an illegal streaming operation there. Games are available in Singapore with a subscription.

      "The Premier League is currently engaged in its most comprehensive global anti-piracy programme," it said. "This includes supporting our broadcast partners in South-east Asia with their efforts to prevent the sale of illicit streaming devices."

      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/rampant-piracy-in-singapore-sparks-calls-for-crackdown-from-hollywood-sports-titans

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Today 6:23 PMwallstreetraider wrote  Let God deals with them ...
      Only He can judge ...

      We can only complain to God until He decides to take action ...
      Our job is never stop complaining ...

      Remember what Jesus tell them when they asked Him is it right to save a man during sabbath day ...

      Even Jesus called them hypocrites and fu.ck them upside down ...

      And they thought Jesus was an ordinary man ....

      Romans 2: 14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.);... God created the conscience in man to convict or acquit them.

      For all the corrupted public servants who bully others, cheat etc and do a bad job just like the misconduct of the police who abuse their authority and try to censor/silence the press to make their own jobs easier/ themselves appear good will probably get premature heart disease and cancers because they will self discover in later life that they did a lousy job by taking short changing justice by cheating the freedom of information / press system.

      More than just a high salary is needed to achieve the satisfaction of doing a really good job. Thus, many PAP politicians and Singaporean civil servants with bad attitudes, laziness, cutting corners will suffer premature cancers and heart ailments from the stress of self sabotage by serving their own self interest and doing a lousy, short-sighted job.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Singapore Police like to silence the media to make themselves look good.

      Singapore police should uphold the law LESS by dirty tactics, unnecessary threats and coercion and MORE by gaining the public's trust.

      I would like to know why, in excess of 2.5years after the tragic death of Miss Ee and even after the court had sentenced Tan Hui Zhen and husband Pua, Miss Ee's collegues were still warned by police "not to share any details".

      Are there any other guilty parties not investigated/ charged by the police, do the police like to silence the press so that they can take their OWN SWEET TIME to investigate cases, are the police AFRAID that their own investigative skills pale in comparison to the internet or news media?
      Unless the police have good reason to temporarily ban witnesses from talking to the press or have a court order banning the revelation of names for instance when a father rapes his own child which may have repercussions to the child in school/later life, I don't think the police have any business shutting witnesses up or censoring the news just so that they can solve criminal cases earlier or before coffeeshop uncles know more.

      In this case, the crime was obvious and the suspects came clean, so why was there any need to silence witnesses or the media.

      A more productive and efficient police force is achieved by better attention to witnesses and trust by witnesses that information surrendered would serve a good cause. Witness silencing only serves to sweep the issue of crime and injustice underground and like lipstick on a pig, only serves to silence news media and DECEIVE the public that the police are doing the right job.

      The Singapore Police force should stop such cloak and dagger operations because silencing the media does not help them do a better job nor aid the cause of justice when their dirty bag of tricks are revealed.

      High time the anti-competition commission of Singapore investigate the SPF for the anti-competitive and media silencing dirty tricks they use to look good.
      =================
      Eight months of beatings that ended in death.
      1 of 4

      From top: Miss Annie Ee first met Tan Hui Zhen when they were teenagers and they rekindled their friendship in 2013. Estranged from her family, Miss Ee moved into Tan and husband Pua Hak Chuan's four-room Woodlands flat in late 2013. Investigators ou
      Investigators outside the Woodlands flat where Miss Ee's body was found. An autopsy report revealed she had 12 fractured ribs, seven fractured vertebrae, a ruptured stomach and a body crowded with blisters and bruises.ST PHOTO: NG WUI KUEK
      PUBLISHED: DEC 3, 2017,
      The abuse, which increased in intensity, made it difficult for her to walk, stand and breathe
      Tan Tam Mei
      She could barely breathe because of her fractured ribs and was unable to stay awake as she was weak from daily beatings and open wounds, but Miss Annie Ee knew she was in for more punishment.

      The weapon - a roll of shrink wrap weighing 1kg that her abusers knew she feared - was placed next to the woman she called "jie jie" (meaning older sister in Chinese).

      Her "jie jie", Tan Hui Zhen, and husband Pua Hak Chuan, whom she called "jie fu" (meaning brother-in-law in Chinese), had returned that evening to find Miss Ee, 26, lying in her own urine.


      They accused her of urinating on the floor to get attention. While she lay slumped in a chair from exhaustion, the couple decided to punish her for her "bad attitude".

      It would be the last round of beatings Miss Ee, who was intellectually disabled, would suffer before dying in her sleep hours later in the early morning of Apr il 13, 2015.

      She was hit repeatedly by the shrink wrap and fell to the floor, but even the sight of her on the ground inching towards her room did not stop her abusers. Pua continued to hit her legs, abdomen and buttocks, which already had open wounds and blisters.

      SIGNS OF INJURY

      Once, she said she had been beaten by a colleague, so I told her to tell her manager or call the police. The other times, she said she fell, but I did wonder how it was possible that she could fall so often.

      RETIREE XU WEI JIAN, on asking Miss Ee about the bruises she had around her eyes.
      Pua then picked up a plastic dustbin and smashed it down on Miss Ee with such force the bin cracked.

      Earlier that day, she had tried to commit suicide by cutting her wrists, having felt "useless" when she could not carry out Tan's instructions.

      She was found dead in bed the next day.

      Miss Ee first met Tan when they were teenagers and they rekindled their friendship in 2013.

      Estranged from her family, Miss Ee moved into Tan and Pua's four-room Woodlands flat in late 2013 and was given housework to do.

      Over the eight months of abuse - from August 2014 until her death - Miss Ee started showing up for her waitressing job with bruises on her body, arms, face and neck.

      The beatings and their increased intensity over time, with some sessions lasting up to two hours, meant she had difficulty walking, standing and breathing. She also became incontinent.

      The couple made Miss Ee surrender her salary of $1,200, from which she was given a weekly allowance of $50. This was later cut to $30.

      When The Sunday Times visited Miss Ee's former workplaces, ex-colleagues declined to comment and said they had been told by the police not to share any details.

      However, court documents revealed they had noticed that Miss Ee would hide her injuries by applying a thick layer of concealer, letting her hair down and wearing a cap. She would keep mum when questioned, but on one occasion, had told an assistant manager "my family", when asked about the injuries.

      An autopsy report revealed the extent of abuse she suffered: 12 fractured ribs, seven fractured vertebrae, a ruptured stomach and a body crowded with blisters and bruises. The report also said she died of acute fat embolism. She had been beaten so severely that fatty tissue below the skin had separated from the muscle and entered her bloodstream, interfering with blood getting oxygen in the lungs and leading to progressive cardiac and respiratory failure.

      On Friday, Tan, 33, was sentenced to 16½ years' jail, and Pua, 38, was given 14 years' jail and 14 strokes of the cane.

      They were initially charged with murder, but the counts were amended after police completed investigations and on the basis of forensic pathologist reports.

      Tan suffered from depression and borderline personality disorder. Justice Hoo Sheau Peng said she gave this little weight but took into account as a mitigating factor that the couple had come clean in revealing what they had done.

      The pair had pleaded guilty on Monday to various charges for the extensive torture of Miss Ee.

      A person said to be Miss Ee's younger sister, who did not want to be named, told Channel NewsAsia that her family was concerned that Miss Ee's simple nature could lead to her being "bullied or cheated".

      She said Miss Ee felt that the family did not give her the freedom to make her own friends. Miss Ee later moved out to live with Tan and Pua. Her younger sister said Tan had exerted "total control" over Miss Ee.

      Miss Ee was said to be the eldest among her brothers and sisters.

      Her sibling said her family "will never be able to forgive (the couple) for what they did, especially Tan".

      Neighbours The Sunday Times spoke to said the trio did not interact much with others, but the sound of mahjong games could be heard from the third-floor unit at Woodlands Avenue 9.

      "I don't remember any shouts or screaming. We were all surprised to find out that such severe abuse was happening right under our nose," said a neighbour who wanted to be known only as Miss Lee, 35, a secretary.

      As Miss Ee usually left the flat early around 9am, neighbours did not see her often, said retiree Xu Wei Jian, 70.

      They would greet each other as she walked past Mr Xu's flat. He had on at least two occasions asked her why she often had bruises around her eyes.

      "Once, she said she had been beaten by a colleague, so I told her to tell her manager or call the police. The other times, she said she fell, but I did wonder how it was possible that she could fall so often," said Mr Xu in Mandarin.

      When asked if he regretted not alerting anyone to Miss Ee's injuries, he said: "There's no use regretting, she's gone now. I never expected that the injuries could come from the people she lived with."

      •Additional reporting by Selina Lum

      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 03, 2017, with the headline 'Eight months of beatings that ended in death'.
      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/eight-months-of-beatings-that-ended-in-death

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Vulpix (HWZ) wrote

      genie47 wroteBeen doing that. At first when a bus starts its right turn signal and I'm coming in fast, I slowed down but now I don't. Bus drivers actually give way to you as a cyclist as compared to "MY CAR IS VERY BIG" mentality drivers.

      You go at around 28-32 kph, the bus drivers can see that and will wait for you to pass. They rather pass you later.

      Remember to thumbs up, smile, wave or nod to them as you pass.


      Then all the people in the bus cursing at you. :s13:


      People riding public bus have the responsibility to make time for delays due to traffic jams, unpredictable crowding, system faults and breakdowns, mass terrorism events, smelly co-passengers, but enjoy public transportation at a gahmen SUBSIDISED rate. If they are upset about public buses arriving late/terrorism threat/system breakdowns, they can always pick up a bicycle and start peddling instead. Cyclist do NOT receive any gahmen transport subsidy and in fact serving NATIONAL SERVICE by keeping fit in WAR AGAINST DIABETES (and low carbon emissions transportation), so bus-bicycle lanes are their ONLY implicit public subsidy. Instead of dysfunctionally raising their own blood pressure whilst riding a bus in heavy traffic , bus passengers should lower it by experiencing a self-determined life of cycling and controling one's own destiny since the harder on peddles, the faster one arrives, and the richer (save $on transport) and healthier, and satisfied (being a responsibile low carbon emissions, healthier citizen) one gets in the process.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • JakeJ, (PF, USA) wroteLately a lot of people we know going in for minor day surgeries they can afford only because of insurance are dying from the surgery. Medical accidents are now the #2 cause of death in the USA. Hundreds of thousands. Go in for a simple hernia operation and end up with your organs failing, in a coma and on a respirator. Another person we know that happened to from dental surgery. Another person's father was declared "brain dead" twice, but when pulling the plug refused he revived both times. There is a growing joke around here that if you want to commit suicide, go the ER foor some elective surgery. Insurance also is likely why have the people in the country take a hand full of prescription drugs a day despite all the warnings about them.

      It is becoming if a person can avoid surgery they are playing Russian roulette if they have it done.

      I feel so SAD that both insurance and the medical profession, once noble, are now fighting over scraps.

      In the beginning, both insurer strived to promote health, but i dunno which party started the DOWNWARDS SPIRAL to now promote ILLNESS.

      Ironically now both insurer and hospital want the person more sick/ dead ASAP, but each for separate reasons.

      The insurer wants the person whose payouts exceed premium payments paid/ doesn't seem to be getting better- dead ASAP so all medical treatments can CEASE IMMEDIATELY to protect profit margins of the insurance trade. The doctors get paid for services rendered, so the sicker the patient gets, the more compensation for work done they can invoice the insurance company for. The most profitable patients are those on terminal life support who use every device and procedure under the sun and basically become the guinea pig- piggy bank for all hospital staff without being able to complain too much. It is too complicated to pay/ rank numerous private hospitals and clinics based upon performance, so hospitals get to become the leeches/parasites of the insurance business, just as long as the Dr CEOs and practitioners know the loopholes to get patients sicker without ever being caught.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • 24-hours bus-bicycle lanes are necessary for optimal road infrastructure use and a more livable Singapore.

      Issues:
      1) Sedentary lifestyle results in diabetes because lack of exercise results in reduced metabolism, caloric excess state and thus glucose overload state aka diabetes. Diabetes is associated with blindness, kidney dialysis, amputations, stroke, heart disease which will attract stratospheric medical and nursing care cost upwards of S$66billion p.a. by 2030. http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/elderly-health-costs-to-rise-tenfold-by-2030-report 
      2) There will be increased need for 2 wheel transport to deliver e-commerce goods, food delivery (UBER eats, deliveroo etc) and increased dockless rental bikes use 24hours/day: failure to facilitate night time deliveries by bicycle will only lead to more daytime road congestion/ higher delivery costs if costlier motorised delivery options are used. Currently, roads in day are congested and UNSAFE at night despite very low vehicle traffic due to a few inconsiderate motorist who love high speed racing (even overtaking on the left), and drunk drivers veering from left to right across all lanes: placing cyclists lives in grave danger despite a very much empty road.
      3) Increased aged population, terrorism threat, lithium battery gadget use means more need for Home Team (ambulance, fire, police) vehicle use. 24hrs public transport lanes aka bus-bicycle lanes would allow such uniformed public servants rapid and efficient deployment to the site of action.
      4) More space to park dockless rental bicycles, electric kick scooters and multiple electric wheelchair users and increased population will make footpaths over congested so some transfer of cyclist and electric bicycles to the road 24hrs a day is a sensible policy option.
      [Image: BB-lane1200.jpg]pict source: http://lovecycling.net/projects/busbike-lane/ 

      Solutions :
      All privately owned buses, cars, commercial vehicles etc will not be allowed to use the 24hours bus-bicycle lanes except with special permission (e.g. YOG/ SEA games duties etc) and all public buses, Home Team/ vehicles granted bus-bicycle lane use shall be equipped with tamper-proof continuous video recording cameras whenever in operation so that all traffic accidents and complaints of dangerous / inconsiderate driving can be properly investigated by the traffic police and where necessary, penalties served.

      Bicycles may cycle 2 abreast only at night and during off peak bus operational hours. During the day/ at peak bus lane operating hours, cyclist must only travel in single file except when overtaking.

      Bus lanes should also be wide enough for buses to easily and safely overtake cyclist cycling in single file. Over time, buses and cyclist will be able to coordinate any zig zaging where necessary: across each other's path as buses need to keep left to enter bus lanes and overtake on the right hand side, however this challenge can be safely overcome with public bus driving tests incorporating BOTH a cycling and bus driving component such that whilst a particular driver is being tested, the rest of the bus driver wannabe candidates will be on bicycle to simulate the proper bus-bicycle overtaking procedures. Buses also need not rush to meet strict arrival schedules since anyone impatient with traffic can always hire a dockless rental bicycle and whiz through the crowd; only timely bus departure from the terminus should be monitored. Users of 2 wheelers on public roads should all wear helmets.

      A number of traffic police and LTA staff would cycle to work/ patrol the streets on bicycle with video recording (24 hrs patrolling etc) and issue summons to errant cyclist who cycle abreast during bus lane peak hours, bus captains with reckless driving behaviors and any other unauthorized vehicles which travel on bus lanes at ANY time of the day since bus-bicycle lanes would be operational 24hours.

      Hopefully, with bus-bicycle lanes fully implemented, road traffic will be better spaced out across the 24hour period, the war against global warming and diabetes would be more than just lip service and Singapore will be a healthier, safer, greener and livelier place for all to live and work in.

      PS: Bus and bicycle sharing lanes are nothing new and exists in many other countries too: 
      [Image: DSC00103%20bus%20bike%20lane1.jpg] http://www.bikexprt.com/bikepol/facil/lanes/bikebus.htm

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Same treatment as war against DIABETES . Caloric controlled diet and exercise ...

       

      Just like uncontrolled diabetes causes the toes n feet to fall off vz gangrene, same thing will happen to the KKJ.

       

      Only healthy lifestyle habits can keep the toes intact and the KKJ functioning well.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Healthcare insurance can ironically bring on Premature Demise and Early Sickness.

      Firstly, insurance is the business of guaranteeing against IMPROBABLE (low incidence) high costs catastrophe, so that insurance company can pocket as much of the premiums as possible and the clients (policy holders) can sleep well at night.

      But today, the original concept of health care / any insurance has become CORRUPTED BEYOND RECOGNITION.

      People NEGLECT their own health thinking that healthcare insurance would solve any and every health related problem without pain/ costs and even ignore personal warning signs of ill health till illness is at a terminal stage because they have faith in insurers to pick the tab (and in modern-day medicine to reverse all disease) which are both very false assumptions because this only results in stratospheric claims payouts by insurers since owning a health insurance policy has now instead INDUCED people to NEGLECT their own health resulting in need to treat late stage diseases at much higher treatment costs. Private hospitals are also experts at maxing out healthcare insurance benifits and charge for everything from call button activations to cotton-wool swabs used.

      To avoid going bankrupt/ maintain generous profit margins in the light of the high claims payouts experienced, insurance companies then have to raise premiums for remaining participants to the maximum humanly possible which places the remaining participants (who never maintained personal health) between rock and a hard place.

      These participants, having invested a large proportion of their income on healthcare insurance premiums at the expense of decent food, disciplined exercise and adequate rest, now have diabetes and other severe chronic disease that would make them un-insurable should they seek alternative insurance at an advanced state of disease/age, yet have to contend with the stratospheric healthcare insurance premiums that are killing them from the inside and causing them excessive stress and ill health that would soon kill them if the insurance premiums don't. They are held ransom by both the threat illness due to chronic disease accumulation as well as stratospheric insurance premiums which they can ill afford: every day is a train wreck in slow motion in an accelerated downwards spiral.

      In short, modern day healthcare insurance has become a dangerous and addictive drug that gives false SHORT term reassurance but long term COSTS due to being poorly conceptualized and indiscriminately sold/mis-applied.

      Healthcare insurance can NEVER be an effective substitute for a disciplined and proper healthy lifestyle and can adversely cause early demise and ill health if it is indiscriminately applied in a way that places the cart before the horse.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Singapore private Hospital seizes $300,000+ of assets from heart bypass patient to satisfy hospital bill.
      Wonder which private hospital cos CNA did not mention, wonder which insurer, collected the premiums but did not give effective counselling so patient MISTAKENLY chose private hospital cover when she was actually NOT insured for her very lazy and UNHEALTHY lifestyle (most like sleep little, didn't exercise, ate too much etc resulting in eventual need for heart bypass surgery... would have been worse if she were mean to others cos that is bad for personal karma (raises the blood pressure and cholesterol, eat too much sugar n get diabetes, makes one grumpy n quarrelsome and angry w everyone else all the time etc)... anyway, she has amassed a large amount of wealth on earth judging by all the expensive looking furniture in her big house, she should have been less greedy for physical possessions and done more charity which would have reduced her blood pressure and cholesterol (charity is actually good exercise since u have to physically visit the poor, patiently interact with them to understand their plight and brainstorm about effective ways of improving their plight and visit them countless times to make sure that your suggestions are properly implemented whilst training oneself to be a better person @the same time).

      Insurer won because arbitrator agreed that contract favoured the insurers case. They had written the contract in such a way that the client would not be covered for heart problems at private hospital.

      Hospital won the case because patient PURPOSELY chose private hospital to get princess treatment instead of going to a gahmen one unlike our faultless , teflon Singapore Minister of Transport who had his at National Heart Center @A1+++ class for just $8 in 2010. So clever, that is why can be Transport Minister to solve SMRT flooding n train collisions...
      KBW showing off his $8 urgent heart bypass to bypass life threatening levels of fat and cholesterol had been found built up over the years in his heart arteries.
      [Image: Khaw+Boon+Wan.jpg] https://www.facebook.com/notes/theonlinecitizen/khaw-boon-wan-pays-s8-for-bypass-surgery/446633433963
      Silly women, lost some of her possessions to the karang guni n court bailiff on 9th November 2017.
      ============
      Pay attention to exclusion clauses in health insurance: Experts
      By Kamini Devadass 19 Nov 2017 12:36AM (Updated: 19 Nov 2017 12:40AM)
      A 73-year-old woman thought her hospital bill for a heart bypass surgery in 2013 would be covered by insurance but her upgraded policy had an exclusion clause for heart-related conditions. To pay bills owed to the hospital, the High Court ordered an auction of some of her assets.

      Read more at http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/pay-attention-to-exclusion-clauses-in-health-insurance-experts-9419058

      Peektures from CNA video (some annotations I added tongue in cheek though (based on my interpretation of the video)):
      [Image: xwVyqHY.jpg]
      Expensive lookin table:
      [Image: I6ro69b.jpg]
      Seized:
      [Image: fffBqAZ.jpg]
      I wonder how many microwave ovens make up S$300,000+...
      [Image: AgKzByU.jpg]
      Guys to do the seizing (look like professional karang guni men/ ex-ah loong san etc):
      [Image: FI6F6id.jpg]
      I believe that that's Mdm Tan showing the karang guni around although all her bank account statements are probably safely in her back pack sling bag.
      [Image: KxdjrAH.jpg]
      Very big landed property the Tan's own i assume (unless rented, if so, why cannot stay HDB?)
      [Image: cu1Goqm.jpg]
      Not my fault, I also did not put my HPB step tracker on legs of my dog, religiously exercised 150mins a week all my life, controlled my diet, shunned alcohol, helped the poor and interacted closely with them and never lost my temper... but just thought that the medical insurance company was Santa Claus whose job was to give me a free lunch...
      [Image: 8zDMmON.jpg]
      [Image: rBolHNP.jpg]

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Partnering Bike rental companies in War Against Diabetes and MRT train breakdowns.

      [​IMG]

      Tax bike rental companies $30/bike/annum to operate due to the fact that they incur public infrastructure costs for provision of dockless public rental bike parking bays and more frequently require PUB and police assistance etc for theft, flooding etc when the public, annoyed by them cause obstruction by dumping them in canals resulting in PUB anti-flood operations and canal maintenance costs.

      The notional licensing fee of $30/bike/annum would make rental companies more alert to providing good service since there would be per bike bottom line costs to operate unlike current uncompetitive market whereby obike charges $2/hour whilst ofo usual charge is $0.50/ride. Obike also demands $49deposit whilst ofo requires none: the disparate charges may cause some citizens to accuse obike of overcharging and even act out dysfunctionally by dumping obikes in canals and give PUB additional headache by causing flooding due to canal/drain waterflow obstruction : obike is unlikely to compensate for the subsequent flood nor retrieve a salt water damaged/corroded bike unfit for use resulting in PUB having to foot increased garbage disposal costs even for the dockless bike itself. The intent of the dockless rental bike license fee is thus to keep bike rental quality standards up, prices competitive and to maintain the public perception that rental bikes are indeed a genuine public good. Many would not hesitate to have bike abusers punished and also report damaged / illegally parked bikes promptly resulting in better user experience and public acceptance of dockless public rental bikes as part of a cosmopolitan city scape.

      The $30/bike p.a.licensing fees should be 100% recirculated back to Singapore citizens and PR vz a 10hours/ $10/month voucher (whichever higher) for use by every bike rental company (or an amt proportional to bike license fees paid by each company) for free use of bikes by citizens who will also NOT have to pay the $49 bike deposit (obike, Mobike) provided they register vz identity card number as verified by Singpass account 2 step authentication vz sms code to registered phone number. Utilization of quota of foc use vouchers by citizens would offset the bike rental licensing fees payable by ofo, obike, Mobike etc and convince all citizens that public dockless bike rental is a public good and thus here to stay. Ultimately, some dockless public bicycle hire companies would pay zero licensing fees (having been offset by citizens utilizing their quotas) whilst others may have their business sunk by license fee costs and poor public response due to uncompetitive charges / poor quality /non-existent service provision.

      LTA may also subsidise of waive all dockless bike rental each time the SMRT breaks down to alleviate public transportation woes or make bike use free during peak periods to alleviate the need for MRT use discounts to shift peak hour overcrowding issues. Early closure of MRT lines to facilitate maintenance work would also be less painful.

      Not to mention the tremendous strides in the War against Diabetes as more Singaporeans adopt a physically active lifestyle, improve environmental conditions due to lesser fossil fuel use and make Singapore a truely cosmopolitan capital where being able to operate a bicycle can be the most important passport to seeing the whole of Singapore.

      PS: "people who cycled to work had a 52% lower risk of dying from cardiovascular diseases, and a 40% lower risk of dying from cancer than those who drive or take public transport." http://www.ethozgroup.com/first-timers-guide-bike-sharing-singapore/ 


      PS: the licensing fee of $30 is just a ball park figure subject to adjustment as case may be. The most important thing being the RECIRCULATION of the licensing fee 100% back to citizens to use bicycle FOC within quota limits to improve the public perception of bike rental companies and improve mass adoption of a physically active and rugged lifestyle. In this process, PUB would also improve its anti-flood performance and reduce canal cleaning costs as fewer disgruntled citizens dump dockless hire bikes into canals and drains.

      PS: All dockless hire bikes should have a visible registration number and the rider particulars , geo position etc details should be traceable and retrievable by LTA in the case of dangerous or inconsiderate riding behavior.

      PS: 10 foc hours/month/citizen is derived as follows:
      Total dockless rental bikes in SG i estimate is 100,000. X 24hrs X 30days = 72,000,000 hrs.
      Tax 20%= 14,4000,000 hrs.
      Divide by 5m population = 2.88hrs.
      Approx only a quarter of population at best will use service, so 10hrs is a fair estimate to begin with. So dockless bike rental companies will be able to retrieve their dockless bike licensing fees if they show that they have done their fair share in war against DIABETES if citizens on average use dockless bike rental services 2.88hrs/month vz the 10foc hours/month rental scheme.
      Based on 10hrs/month @ $0.50/ride (estimated to last 1hr) ofo bike rental rate, a dockless bike licensing fee of $60/bike p.a. is fair and 100% redeemable if a bike company is able to attract citizens to utilise their bike rental quotas of up to 10 foc cycling hours/month.

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • SMRT bait and switch ruse is finally dead.
      Were the FOC train rides indeed for real?
      ---------
      DEFINITION of 'Bait And Switch'
      A dishonest marketing tactic in which a marketer advertises a very attractive price/rate/term that is really a teaser rate meant to attract customers. Once the customer comes into the store/office to inquire about the advertised price/rate (the "bait"), the advertiser will attempt to sell the customer a more expensive product (the "switch").
      Read more: Bait And Switch http://www.investopedia.com/terms/b/bait-switch.asp
      ---------------------
      Problems with the old 18 City free exit stations in the pre Dec28, 2017 scheme:
      1st, the scheme was UNFAIR because whilst I definitely helped cause congestion in MRT train when traveling in train right through the city area, i would purposely not travel off peak because even if i did so, my destination NOT being one of the privileged 18 stations located in the privileged CBD location, would yield zero discount, and thus the scheme was lost on me.

      2nd ly, the MRT was so plagued with delays that i would wonder if commuters were being swindled of their promised free trip: trips would not be free if due to train fault, the commuter exited AFTER 7.45am... which made the free trip like a lottery win: only achievable if the train system didn't breakdown due to ignorant MOT staff/ negligent design: i.e. the minister of transport didn't need to find somebody else to blame that day.

      =========

      Off-peak perks likely to ease rail crowds, say experts
      Transport experts said the new scheme has a better chance of getting people to travel earlier than the existing free pre-peak period initiative, which is only for city area stations. 
      [Image: ST_20171031_VNMRT3_3524982.jpg]
      Transport experts said the new scheme has a better chance of getting people to travel earlier than the existing free pre-peak period initiative, which is only for city area stations. ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN
      PUBLISHED 31 October 2017
      Sue-Ann Tan
      Zhaki Abdullah
      Giving subsidies to commuters travelling throughout the MRT network during the morning off-peak period is likely to be an effective move to ease peak-hour crowds, said experts.

      The Public Transport Council announced yesterday that commuters who tap in before 7.45am at any train station on weekdays from Dec 29 will receive a discount of up to 50 cents on their fares.

      Transport experts say this is an improvement on the existing scheme, which gives free rides to those who tap out before 7.45am at 18 MRT stations in the city area.

      Associate Professor Michael Li, a transport economist at Nanyang Technological University, said: "This is the right move. By giving the off-peak incentive, it should encourage people to move towards that time bracket.

      "Commuters definitely would respond. If 5 per cent of commuters make the shift, I think it would be a success."

      He added, however, that the Government would need to do a trial and error of the discount quantum to reach a price point that is most attractive for commuters to distribute the load more evenly.

      Singapore University of Social Sciences economist Walter Theseira agreed that the new scheme would ease peak-hour congestion.

      He added that it had a better chance of getting people to travel earlier than the existing free pre-peak period initiative.

      "Previously, people had to tap out before 7.45am to get free travel, so it benefits those who already travel very early anyway. Now, by shifting 7.45am to the time people tap in, it is more targeted at those who travel around 8am to 9am, which is when there is a spike in commuters."

      He added: "It is now also nationwide rather than just the city area, including congested stations such as Jurong East. There are many travelling to work in commercial areas outside the city, so this will impact them too."

      Commuters interviewed had mixed views on whether such a move would make them change their travel patterns.

      Ms Nadia Rosli, 24, a project manager at a food manufacturing company, said she would not wake up 30 minutes earlier for a 50-cent reduction. "Maybe I would do it once a week but definitely not every day," she said.

      mrt.jpg
      The new off-peak discount will apply to all stations and when a commuter taps in before 7.45am. 
      Related Story
      Discount for commuters who enter stations before 7.45am on weekdays; all other fares unchanged

      "I would also rather have fast, efficient trains that don't break down as much even if it meant paying slightly higher fares," she added.

      Mr Eugene Tay, 42, an executive officer, said: "I tap in at 6.45am, so I will get the discount but it's not a big deal. I would prefer that the trains are more frequent and on time."

      Ms Deanna Lim, 23, a lifestyle blog intern, said she would consider travelling earlier for the discount.

      "If I get to work an hour or so earlier, I can go to the gym and have breakfast before work. I wake up early anyway, so it isn't such an issue for me," she said.

      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 31, 2017, with the headline 'Off-peak perks likely to ease rail crowds, say experts'.

      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/transport/off-peak-perks-likely-to-ease-rail-crowds-say-experts

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Chronic lifestyle disease sufferers will have few future full-time job options.
      "an ageing workforce and medical cost inflation in Singapore are projected to drive up average medical costs per employee by 108 per cent to S$1,973 per year in 2030, representing a mounting financial burden for employers.... ....What is worth noting is that 60 per cent of all medical claim costs will be attributable to 10 per cent of claimants, said Mercer..."

      Means that HR will also require submission of smoking status, waist-height ratio/BMI, impedance tested muscle to fat ratio https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4842420/, IPPT / 2.4km run timing score, pre-IPPT SAF FFI results by interested candidates to qualify for job interview since a sickly employee can easily cause company purchased employee healthcare insurance premiums to rise stratospherically (~$12k p.a. /pax upwards) if insurance actuaries determine the employee population to be high healthcare service consumption risk at application / annual renewal of healthcare insurance policy. 

      Productivity loss (average $2-4000/pax p.a.) due to drowsiness @work or sick leave would also be high for employees with diabetes, hypertension, obstructive sleep apnea, high cholesterol, smokers etc.

      Personal health will be one key employee selection criteria towards the provision of future full-time job /employment.

      =========
      Singapore productivity loss due to sick leave may hit $3.3b by 2030: Mercer study
      [Image: officeworkers25.jpg]
      The study reveals that an ageing workforce and medical cost inflation in Singapore are projected to drive up average medical costs per employee by 108 per cent.
      The study reveals that an ageing workforce and medical cost inflation in Singapore are projected to drive up average medical costs per employee by 108 per cent.PHOTO: ST FILE
      PUBLISHED. OCT 25, 2017, 10:46 AM SGT
      Ann Williams
      SINGAPORE - Singapore productivity loss due to sickness absenteeism may reach S$3.3 billion by 2030, says Mercer in a study released on Wednesday (Oct 25).

      The study reveals that an ageing workforce and medical cost inflation in Singapore are projected to drive up average medical costs per employee by 108 per cent to S$1,973 per year in 2030, representing a mounting financial burden for employers.

      Mercer, together with Marsh & McLennan Companies' Asia Pacific Risk Centre (APRC), issued the report on Aging Workforce: Cost And Productivity Challenges Of Ill Health In Singapore.


      The segment of Singapore employees aged over 50 is projected to increase by 55 per cent, and to represent 40 per cent of the workforce by 2030. With an increase in demand for medical services, the ageing demographic will contribute to 41 per cent of the escalation in medical costs, as it will drive a rise in the utilisation of healthcare services, which together with healthcare cost inflation, will result in a significant surge in overall costs.

      "With improved management of health conditions permitting individuals to stay in the workforce longer, increasing financial needs in retirement, as well as more flexible employment options, such as working from home, and on-demand jobs in the gig economy, there is a growing trend for Singapore employees to postpone their retirement," said Neil Narale, Singapore business leader for Mercer Marsh Benefits.

      "However, health risks increase with age, ranging from diminishing motor and sensory functions to a greater incidence of chronic diseases, which will create challenges for employers."

      In Singapore, societal ageing is estimated to drive the prevalence of chronic diseases such as cancer and diabetes by up to 200 per cent by 2030, which means Singapore will face the challenges of stagnating productivity growth through increasing rates of absenteeism and presenteeism, said the report.

      Based on current trends, productivity loss due to sickness absenteeism per employee is projected to increase by 25 per cent based on GNI (gross national income). With an ageing workforce, at the national level this represents a cost of S$3.3 billion by 2030, a 43 per cent increase from 2016.

      [Image: mercer.png]

      What is worth noting is that 60 per cent of all medical claim costs will be attributable to 10 per cent of claimants, said Mercer.

      This highlights the value of interventions for high-risk groups, such as health and wellness programmes to reduce the incidence of disease, and screening for earlier detection of disease, it added.

      But while an ageing workforce may present challenges related to higher healthcare needs, older workers are associated with advantages such as greater firm-specific knowledge and lower turnover rates, Mercer noted.

      "If managed properly, diversity of age at work can serve to improve productivity and reduce the need for governments to tax corporates and the next generation to support the elderly," said Mr Narale.

      http://www.straitstimes.com/business/economy/singapore-productivity-loss-due-to-sick-leave-may-hit-s33b-by-2030-mercer-study

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • Singapore Hospitals overflow due to citizens following leader's UNHEALTHY LIFESTYLE examples.

      See bottom for example to the bad, unhealthy lifestyle examples set by political leaders in Singapore.

      Can patients go to any hospital in an emergency?
      PUBLISHED. OCT 26, 2017, 5:00 AM SGT
      I read with some concern the report on the Gleneagles Hospital security guard who suffered a heart attack (Gleneagles to pay security guard's medical bill; Oct 14).
      The patient suffered the attack on the hospital's premises and was duly looked after there.
      There were attempts to transfer him to Singapore General Hospital (SGH) but no beds were available till several days later.
      The incident made me wonder if SGH is the only public hospital here with heart specialists.
      If the other hospitals do have heart specialists, did SGH attempt to get in touch with them to secure a bed for the patient?
      Also, if the patient had suffered the attack at home, should his family have taken him to SGH or the closest public hospital.
      Should a patient who suffers a heart attack be taken to one hospital and to another for, say, a stroke?
      Could the Ministry of Health help the public understand the protocol in handling life-threatening cases and how to react in such emergencies?
      Frank Yeo Yong Chong
      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 26, 2017, with the headline 'Can patients go to any hospital in an emergency?'.
      http://www.straitstimes.com/forum/letters-in-print/can-patients-go-to-any-hospital-in-an-emergency

      =============
      Singapore parliamentarians need to be better paragons of fitness & health for the rest of society to follow.
      After all, all PAP MPs/ MP wannabes are bestowed by PA titles and gahmen funds for their campaign (brainwashing) activities in their post as "advisers to grassroots organisations" (in all INCLUDING opposition MP held constituencies), thus, for Singaporean population/ human resorces to be productive to begin with, such advisers also have to be fine examples of fitness and good health, no?

      "As of 2010, more than half of Singapore's adult population between 18 and 69 years old have high cholesterol, four in 10 are overweight or obese, a quarter have prediabetes or diabetes and about one in five has hypertension."

      [Image: yan7.jpg](alt pict view)
      [Image: yan1.jpg](alt img view)http://danielfooddiary.com/2014/06/14/yan/
      KBW showing off his $8 urgent heart bypass to bypass life threatening levels of fat and cholesterol had been found built up over the years in his heart arteries.
      [Image: Khaw+Boon+Wan.jpg] https://www.facebook.com/notes/theonlinecitizen/khaw-boon-wan-pays-s8-for-bypass-surgery/446633433963
      HSK sleeps much less than 4.5hrs/night, like his brain needs no rest:
      "Fellow Tampines MP Desmond Choo was also shocked at the news.
      "We've never heard anything like this. To me, he's like Superman," said Mr Choo.
      "The number of hours he works and the kind of attention span he has, it's amazing."
      The 2012 Hougang by-election candidate recalled the days when he worked closely with Mr Heng, whom he sees as a fatherly figure and source of inspiration.
      "During the by-election period, we would discuss issues until 2am and he would ask me to go home," said Mr Choo.
      "'As a candidate, you need rest,' he would tell me while he continued working with activists. When I returned in the morning, at about 6.30am, he'd already be there."
      http://www.tnp.sg/news/singapore/shanmugam-heng-was-carrying-incredible-load
      [Image: maxresdefault.jpg]http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/finance-minister-heng-swee-keat-feeling-great-apologises-for-not-being-able-to-attend-ndp
      PM LHL, too much fried wings/chendol (fatty food) or skipped sleep before presenting NDR2016/ a mild stroke?:
      [Image: isetO2w.gif]https://edmwimg.wordpress.com/tag/lee-hsien-loong/page/5/
      [Image: Diabetic-Foot-1.jpg]
      [Image: slide_8.jpg]
      [Image: Lv5ToAs.jpg]

      Quote:1 in 10 stroke patients here aged under 50
      PUBLISHED NOV 19, 2016, 5:00 AM SGT
      Linette Lai
      While older people are far more likely to suffer a stroke, one in 10 stroke patients in Singapore is under 50 years old.
      Medical conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol can make a person more likely to get a stroke, say doctors.
      Smoking, too, puts you at risk.

      Last Saturday, Singaporean businesswoman Linda Koh was found unconscious in her Hong Kong hotel room. The 36-year-old was rushed to hospital, where she died soon after.
      Doctors subsequently found that she had suffered a stroke.
      Her father, Mr Alan Koh, told Chinese newspaper Shin Min Daily News that his daughter had a history of high blood pressure and was taking medication for it.
      Strokes occur when part of the blood supply to the brain is cut off.
      The latest figures from the National Registry of Disease Office show that there were 6,943 cases of strokes in 2014, up from 6,642 the previous year.
      They are the fourth most common cause of death in Singapore, and tend to occur among men.
      The incidence rate for men aged between 35 and 44 who were admitted to public hospitals for stroke in 2014 was 58 per 100,000 people, compared with 24 per 100,000 for women in the same age group.
      Doctors who spoke to The Straits Times said there are rarely any warning signs before a stroke happens.
      "Some strokes may be preceded by severe headaches or neck pain," said Dr Carol Tham, a consultant from the National Neuroscience Institute's neurology department. "Unfortunately, most patients do not have any warning symptoms before the stroke occurs."
      During a stroke, people often experience difficulty speaking and walking, weakness on one side of their bodies, and even temporary blindness.
      Dr Ho King Hee, a neurologist at Gleneagles Hospital Singapore, said strokes that result in sudden death are likely to be due to bleeding in the brain from a ruptured blood vessel, rather than a blockage.
      "If you are older, it means that there is more time for damage (to the blood vessels) to accumulate," he said. "But a stroke can happen at any age."
      He advises people who have conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes to keep them in check.
      Dr Tham added that doctors may also prescribe blood-thinning medication for people whose blood tends to clot.
      "If a person has any symptoms of stroke... he should seek treatment at the emergency department immediately as early treatment can help to reduce the disability caused by strokes," she said.
      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 19, 2016, with the headline '1 in 10 stroke patients here aged under 50'.
      http://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/1-in-10-stroke-patients-here-aged-under-50

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • [NSL flooding] KBW "has failed us". 

      KBW vz LTA was fully aware about the irreparable state of the 5000cuM sump pool emptying pumps for the purpose of water drainage of the downwards sloping tracks between Bishan (ground level) and Braddell (underground) MRT stations (to prevent flooding of Braddell MRT station).

      LTA, being the Owner of all MRT assets, is fully cognizant about the safety aspects and mechanical details of main property infrastructure and their safe use thereof.

      LTA being owner of the main infrastructure is duty bound to state in contract when tendering for MRT train operating companies, the critical KPI CHECKLIST for the safe operation of train services in Singapore. Besides the periodic testing, maintenance of automatic float mechanism pump switches and pumps, sump water level monitors and alarms etc , the cleaning of the sump of debris and sludge is essential for the system to work.

      LTA in agreeing to pay for replacement of the entire pump system on 29September 2017, should also have studied the checklist to ensure that the sump was fully empty: corresponding to the LTA agreement with subcontractor transport operator that the pump system was beyond economic repair by the transport operator (SMRT).

      Had LTA provided the subcontractor with a proper sump+ pump system maintenance and assessment time table and checklist, then LTA would have been well aware and in control of the situation and totally averted the 7th October 2017 NS line shutdown for almost 20hours.

      Such an LTA provided CHECKLIST would have inspired LTA to seek SCDF assistance to drain the 5000cuM sump long BEFORE 7th October (rather than after) since a proper sump water level reading would itself have triggered all alarm bells.

      Incidentally, such a checklist would also provide sump+pump drainage operability / performance and determine the most economical options forward.

      Right from the start, it is LTA that was totally sleeping on the job and merely behaving like a mere shareholder / banker of the SMRT company and only depending on SMRT for revenue collection but having zero idea how the MRT is actually designed to operate /work.

      By blaming SMRT for what is essentially LTA negligence /fault from the start, LTA is making it hostile / unfavourable for other public transport sub contractors to bid competitively to run public transport route services and thus unnecessarily escalating public transport costs in Singapore.

      In this regard, Minister Khaw Boon Wan is a lousy workman with the habit of sleeping on the job and then blaming his tools. KBW has "failed us" and his continued appointment as minister for transport is "sad and unnecessary ". Again, in his own words, his appointment as minister "should not have happened"; he should be REPLACED ASAP with someone more capable and embracing a broader overview of public transport provision as a whole.
      -----------------
      Pls also see [Braddell MRT]One switch spoilt = change the entire pump system ... KBW must justify use of state funds!!! to see if total replacement of the entire drainage pump system is actually necessary / just a knee jerk, bazooka shot in the dark: i.e. IRRESPONSIBLE SQUANDERING of public funds by LTA under leadership of KBW.
      ===
      Khaw Boon Wan on NSL flooding: SMRT maintenance team 'failed us'
      Singapore
      Khaw Boon Wan on NSL flooding: SMRT maintenance team 'failed us'

      Train operator SMRT has apologised for the flooding at the Bishan-Braddell MRT tunnel which disrupted services along the North-South Line on Oct 7 and 8. Dr Zhou Yi, a council member at the Institution of Engineers in Singapore, says the situation was preventable.

      related media assets (image or videos) available. Click to see the gallery.
      By Justin Ong
      16 Oct 2017 06:30PM
      (Updated: 16 Oct 2017 11:07PM)

      SINGAPORE: Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan on Monday (Oct 16) said the SMRT maintenance team in charge of the anti-flood system at Bishan station had “failed us”, in his first public address on the major North-South Line (NSL) tunnel flooding incident two weekends ago.

      On the evening of Oct 7 - a Saturday - torrential rainwater seeped in at Bishan station, causing the underground tunnel leading to Newton station to be submerged up to waist level.

      SMRT had to cut off trackside power supply as a safety precaution, causing service on six stops across the NSL to be disabled for about 20 hours. More than a quarter of a million commuters were affected.

      It was Singapore’s first disruption due to flooding and one of SMRT’s worst breakdowns in recent history, prompting much public unhappiness.

      The incident was “sad and unnecessary” - but preventable and should not have happened, said Mr Khaw.

      “We are all sorry it did ... Whatever follow-up action which needs to be done, has already started. Nothing has been covered up.”

      “The incident has pushed back the recovery of public confidence in us,” he acknowledged.

      “POORLY MAINTAINED”

      Mr Khaw said Singapore’s MRT tunnels were designed to handle local weather and cope with “very extreme storms far more severe than the last few weeks”.

      “The bottom line is they should not have been flooded. But on Oct 7, the stretch at Bishan and Braddell stations did.”

      “There are standard anti-flooding systems with huge stormwater sump pits,” he explained. “Our findings show that the anti-flooding system there was poorly maintained.”

      “In simple terms, the stormwater pit can hold more than 5,000 cubic metres of rainfall ... During that period over the catchment area, rainfall could not have exceeded 700 - let’s stretch it, 1,000 cubic metres.”

      [Image: infographic--how-the-mrt-tunnel-flooded.jpg]

      Said Mr Khaw: “If it were well-maintained, the reservoir should be empty before rain starts to flow. But it overflowed. The pit had not been maintained properly.”

      He later revealed that the Land Transport Authority and SMRT had in fact, on Sep 29, made a decision to replace the pumps.

      “So we are late by a few days. Had they proceeded to replace (the pumps) this thing might not even have happened.

      "But I suppose that is life."


      “WE’VE MADE SERIOUS IMPROVEMENTS”

      The Transport Minister said energies had been focused on rails and train signalling systems instead - which he pointed out had improvements to show.

      “At the beginning I said to give me four or five years. We are at the mid-point now,” he stated.

      “We wanted to close the gap with Taipei’s benchmark of 800,000 km without incident ... We have made serious improvements, we have exceeded next year’s target (of 400,000km) and that’s why I was confident enough to say let’s go for 1 million.

      “But I knew Singaporeans couldn’t relate, because they still hear delays here and there because of resignalling.”

      The main reason for this, said Mr Khaw, can be traced to two major projects ongoing at the same time - improvements to existing lines and resignalling for the NSL.

      “I did say the resignalling would have tonnes of problems. I said so in public, to bear with us,” he said.

      “So even when you evaluate our performance in resignalling, we have done well. That’s why I’m concerned when media reports conflate the two projects and draw wrong conclusions.”
      Source: CNA/am

      Read more at http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/khaw-boon-wan-on-nsl-flooding-smrt-maintenance-team-failed-us-9315666

  • bic_cherry's Avatar
    440 posts since Jul '05
    • [Braddell MRT]One switch spoilt = change the entire pump system ... KBW must justify use of state funds!!!

      [Image: Pinnochio.png]
      What was the basis of the LTA urgent decision ("late by a few days") to change the pumps made on 29Sept given to the fact that it was just the pump activation switch (nothing wrong with any pump functioning) that was at fault? (Separate water level monitor and reporting system also spoilt).

      Were the pumps originally damaged due to the quantity of debris collected and uncleared over many years: such that new pumps would have shortened life due to debris build up. Was the pump switch failure due to debris build up too?

      What was the debris clearing protocol and was it strictly adhered to since debris build up is a main cause of RECURRENT switch and pump failure: even if a brand new pump system were installed. It is likely that debris since construction was never cleared since it is proven that the 5000cu m sump reservoir was almost full on 7October. 

      For how long were the water level sensors defective or were SMRT staff ill aware of their existence to begin with.

      Who did LTA discuss with wrt decision to replace the pumps? Had a tender for such an expensive replacement work even been called or was it just an in-principle agreement between some LTA director and seductively dressed vendors that some older water pump models need to be changed?

      Is the switch an ordinary OEM item, just like the water level detectors that NEA uses to detect high drain water levels: if so, would just a proper schedule of pump maintenance and reservoir sludge clearance be sufficient with replacement of the damaged switch (and a rewiring of switches since the pump triggering designed was ill planned in the current case) (one can only know if something really needs replacement if u actually perform maintenance work on it).

      Not all pumps are triggered at the same time due to their stepwise triggering design based upon amount of water collected: thus the pump last to be triggered is likely to be BRAND NEW since even the heavy downpour on 7th October was only 13% of the sump reservoir volume: besides during installation test, the last (3rd) to be triggered pump may be totally brand new (presuming that this is the first instance that the principal trigger switch has ever encountered a fault). The replacement of just the most used (of the three 85 L/sec pumps) would thus suffice (rotating lesser/ unused pumps to more frequent use positions) provided it is proven that replacement is cheaper than parts replacement / routine maintenance.... so what is the LTA's awareness and assessment wrt to the functional state of the pumps since ostensibly, neither LTA nor SMRT were aware of the functionality of the water level meter device, nor the functionality of the pump triggering switch.

      Whilst the LTA might have been aware about the need for water removal pumps to be periodically maintained (/replaced if too costly to fix), it seems CONTRADICTORY for LTA to both plan an urgent, entire pump system replacement (suggestive of beyond salvage pump system) as well as blame SMRT for poor performance when provided with beyond repair pump system since i believe that these industrial standard pump systems costs millions of dollars (not a $2 Diaso ornament/ product that many buy on impulse /fancy) and require regular monitoring, maintenance and some spare part replacement over the working life (like escalators and lifts).

      LTA needs to be hands on and aware about the functionality of its hardware properties such as the serviceability of expensive infrastructure such as heavy duty water pumps and should operate a routine with contractors like SMRT on the maintenance and periodic inspection of such public infrastructure.

      LTA is GUILTY of arm chair leadership and bureaucracy if it's decision to replace the pumps cannot be logically substantiated in the most environmentally friendly and economic way possible. By extension, LTA would be GUILTY of mismanagement of state funds if LTA just threw $$$ blindly at a problem, replacing a probably BRAND NEW pump when the original purpose of having 3 strong pumps with various water level trigger points must surely be for the economical replacement vz downwards pump rotation so that each replaced pump is indeed fully worn out and maxed out its original installation cost.

      "Said Mr Khaw: 'If it were well-maintained, the reservoir should be empty before rain starts to flow. But it overflowed. The pit had not been maintained properly.'
      He later revealed that the Land Transport Authority and SMRT had in fact, on Sep 29, made a decision to replace the pumps."



      Khaw Boon Wan on NSL flooding: SMRT maintenance team 'failed us'
      Singapore
      Khaw Boon Wan on NSL flooding: SMRT maintenance team 'failed us'

      Train operator SMRT has apologised for the flooding at the Bishan-Braddell MRT tunnel which disrupted services along the North-South Line on Oct 7 and 8. Dr Zhou Yi, a council member at the Institution of Engineers in Singapore, says the situation was preventable.

      related media assets (image or videos) available. Click to see the gallery.
      By Justin Ong
      16 Oct 2017 06:30PM
      (Updated: 16 Oct 2017 11:07PM)

      SINGAPORE: Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan on Monday (Oct 16) said the SMRT maintenance team in charge of the anti-flood system at Bishan station had “failed us”, in his first public address on the major North-South Line (NSL) tunnel flooding incident two weekends ago.

      On the evening of Oct 7 - a Saturday - torrential rainwater seeped in at Bishan station, causing the underground tunnel leading to Newton station to be submerged up to waist level.

      SMRT had to cut off trackside power supply as a safety precaution, causing service on six stops across the NSL to be disabled for about 20 hours. More than a quarter of a million commuters were affected.

      It was Singapore’s first disruption due to flooding and one of SMRT’s worst breakdowns in recent history, prompting much public unhappiness.

      The incident was “sad and unnecessary” - but preventable and should not have happened, said Mr Khaw.

      “We are all sorry it did ... Whatever follow-up action which needs to be done, has already started. Nothing has been covered up.”

      “The incident has pushed back the recovery of public confidence in us,” he acknowledged.


      “POORLY MAINTAINED”

      Mr Khaw said Singapore’s MRT tunnels were designed to handle local weather and cope with “very extreme storms far more severe than the last few weeks”.

      “The bottom line is they should not have been flooded. But on Oct 7, the stretch at Bishan and Braddell stations did.”

      “There are standard anti-flooding systems with huge stormwater sump pits,” he explained. “Our findings show that the anti-flooding system there was poorly maintained.”

      “In simple terms, the stormwater pit can hold more than 5,000 cubic metres of rainfall ... During that period over the catchment area, rainfall could not have exceeded 700 - let’s stretch it, 1,000 cubic metres.”

      [Image: infographic--how-the-mrt-tunnel-flooded.jpg]

      Said Mr Khaw: “If it were well-maintained, the reservoir should be empty before rain starts to flow. But it overflowed. The pit had not been maintained properly.”

      He later revealed that the Land Transport Authority and SMRT had in fact, on Sep 29, made a decision to replace the pumps.

      “So we are late by a few days. Had they proceeded to replace (the pumps) this thing might not even have happened.

      "But I suppose that is life."


      “WE’VE MADE SERIOUS IMPROVEMENTS”

      The Transport Minister said energies had been focused on rails and train signalling systems instead - which he pointed out had improvements to show.

      “At the beginning I said to give me four or five years. We are at the mid-point now,” he stated.

      “We wanted to close the gap with Taipei’s benchmark of 800,000 km without incident ... We have made serious improvements, we have exceeded next year’s target (of 400,000km) and that’s why I was confident enough to say let’s go for 1 million.

      “But I knew Singaporeans couldn’t relate, because they still hear delays here and there because of resignalling.”

      The main reason for this, said Mr Khaw, can be traced to two major projects ongoing at the same time - improvements to existing lines and resignalling for the NSL.

      “I did say the resignalling would have tonnes of problems. I said so in public, to bear with us,” he said.

      “So even when you evaluate our performance in resignalling, we have done well. That’s why I’m concerned when media reports conflate the two projects and draw wrong conclusions.”
      Source: CNA/am

      Read more at http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/khaw-boon-wan-on-nsl-flooding-smrt-maintenance-team-failed-us-9315666