Don't make Singapore 'another racist country'
Mon, Dec 28, 2009

I refer to the letter by Mr Edmund Lin, 'Tweak P1 balloting rule to differentiate old citizens from new' published in the Straits Times forum.

As one of the new citizens, I condemn this practice emphatically as this rule is going to split the nation among the citizens.

What this proposal is going to mean is that Mr Edmund Lin's national identity card is pinker than mine and his passport is redder than my Singaporean children.

I found it very ridiculous as one of the reasons many ex-Malaysians including myself, for example, became Singaporean citizens is that Malaysia is practising pro-Malays or Bumiputera politics, that's why we were emigrating, so now that Mr Edmund Lin is trying to call for our Singapore Government to implement some sort of racist politics alike here but in another forms to split the old citizens from the new ones.

He also mentioned in the article that this will add to the benefit of serving the nation. On the contrary, this will split our nation completely as a lot of the citizens here are new citizens including myself.

While you can serve National Service (NS) because you are born Singaporean, some new citizens bring in millions of dollars of investment to Singapore after their conversion by transferring their entire wealth from overseas to Singapore.

We could equally serve the NS if we were born here; we are willing to trigger the gun shot to fight our enemies even though we are not trained in NS.

That we were not born here does not mean we are not loyal. By the time new citizens make up their minds to convert, they have already given it very careful thought and decided to serve the nation well with one heart and one soul.

However, I do admit the bottom line lies with the Immigration and Customs Authority. They should be more careful and stringent in their choices of citizens.

But absolutely, all citizens should be treated equally with equal rights.

Our identity cards and Singapore passports are of the same colours, we sing the same national anthem and read the same pledge so I do not want Singapore to end up becoming another racist country.

Chong Kok Kean

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