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Friday, Sep 5, 2014

Singapore

Govt to seek Parliament endorsement for Aspire report

AsiaOne | Friday, Sep 5, 2014

SINGAPORE - The Government will seek Parliament's endorsement of the Applied Study in Polytechnics and Institute of Technical Education Review (ASPIRE).

Senior Minister of State for Education Indranee Rajah said in the motion which she has tabled before the House, that it sets out the Government's policy to ensure that all Singaporeans, whatever their qualifications, enjoy full opportunities to upgrade and progress during their working lives.

Ms Rajah said its report sets out the Government's support for a tripartite approach to instil a culture of life-long learning, and to recognise and reward individuals based on their skills and performance.

Also up for debate is the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill. If passed, a person using a mobile phone or tablet to send or receive SMS-es, elecronic documents, still or moving images, sound or video files, or accessing the Internet, will be deemed to have committed an offence.

The next Parliament sitting will commence on Monday, Sep 8.

But before these matters, the first order of Parliament will the swearing-in ceremony of the newest batch of Nominated MPs at 1.30pm. Nine new NMPs will be sworn in, including president of the Society for the Physically Disable, lawyer, and wheelchair-user, Ms Chia Yong Yong.

This will be followed by questions from the Members of Parliament (MPs).

Among topics that will be raised by four MPs are concerns on how well-equipped is Singapore to deal with the Ebola outbreak, whether there are preventive measures and treatment plans should a person who has contracted the virus enter Singapore.

The Enhanced Lease Buyback Scheme is also on the schedule. Ms Foo Mee Har (West Coast GRC) will ask how the Housing Development Board (HDB) determines the value of the lease under the scheme when it purchases the lease back from flat owners. Mr Baey Yam Keng (Tampines GRC) will ask what options does a flat owner have if he outlives the 30-year lease, what will happen if a flat under the LBS gets selected for Selective En Bloc Redevelopment Scheme and whether the flat owner will receive the full proceeds in a lump sum should the his CPF Retirement Account meet the Minimum Sum.

Another topic that will be brought up is the increase in Vehicle Entry Permit fees for foreign-registered cars. Mr Ang Wei Neng (Jurong GRC) will be asking what is the expected review from the increase and whether the Malaysian government has informed Singapore on their proposal to impose a fee on Singapore-registered vehicles entering Johor.

Mr Pritam Singh (Aljunied GRC) will be asking if the Government will review its long-standing policy of matching toll charges at the Causeway and Second Link to those set by Malaysia in future, and if any study has been carried out to assess the prospect of higher toll charges on Singapore businesses operating in Johor's Iskandar zone.

cynloh@sph.com.sg

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