Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

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Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby Daddy D » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:51 am

http://www.straitstimes.com/Parliament/ ... 72816.html

"Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Thursday hit back at Workers' Party member Gerald Giam's comments about Singaporeans being unable to afford a flat, telling him to 'catch up' with policies already introduced.

He said the Government has made 'major moves' in the past five years, which include improving housing subsidies.

'So I would like to assure Mr Gerald Giam, who might not have caught up with all the developments... that a family with $1,000 income can now, through our housing subsidies, purchase a small flat,' Mr Tharman added.

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'So you're concerned about younger people being unable to afford a flat. Try and catch up on what we've beendoing.'

Mr Tharman, referring to Mr Giam

'How much is $1,000 income? That captures about 98 per cent of our younger cohorts, those who are below 35.

'So you're concerned about younger people being unable to afford a flat. Try and catch up on what we've been doing.'

He was responding to Mr Giam's speech on Wednesday which stressed that economic growth must go hand-in-hand with a fairer distribution of wealth.

The Non-Constituency MP had said many younger Singaporeans from low-income households, who dream of buying a house for themselves and their parents, will find this difficult, 'given our widening income gap, increasing high inflation, and slowing social mobility'.

The Government gives an Additional Housing Grant of up to $40,000 to allow low-income Singapore families to buy Housing Board (HDB) flats. It introduced a further Special Housing Grant last year of up to $20,000.

Mr Tharman also said on Thursday that two recently announced schemes to help the elderly unlock the value in their flats could be tweaked.

The Silver Housing Bonus gives owners $20,000 to downgrade to a smaller unit, while those on the Enhanced Lease Buyback Scheme sell the tail end of their lease to the HDB in return for $15,000 upfront and monthly payments for life. But MPs including Dr Lily Neo (Tanjong Pagar GRC) have called for less money to be locked up in this savings account to help the elderly take advantage of the schemes.

Mr Tharman said: 'That's a valid point because for those who are, let's say, in their mid-70s, if they want to take advantage of our scheme, it may not make sense for them to top up all the way to the prevailing minimum sum for the purpose of CPF Life.

'So it's something which we are studying and we will complete our review on this within a couple of months.'

Other MPs also had their say on housing, albeit on different issues.

Ms Lee Bee Wah, chairman of the Government Parliamentary Committee for National Development, urged the HDB to give downgraders priority when allocating flats.

Ms Lee also called for a review of a rule that forces downgraders who sell their private property to wait 2 1/2 years before buying a public flat."
Last edited by Daddy D on Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby Daddy D » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:52 am

I don't like the condescending tone...
:stompfeet:

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby LOLMum » Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:01 am

but that's the way to beat the opponent down and keep him down all the way in life.

mr giam needs to polish up his speaking skills and be a bit loud too.

give him a few more years and hopefully ..............

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby verykiasu2010 » Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:13 am

LOLMum wrote:but that's the way to beat the opponent down and keep him down all the way in life.

mr giam needs to polish up his speaking skills and be a bit loud too.

give him a few more years and hopefully ..............


politics has no mercy
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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby LOLMum » Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:30 am

verykiasu2010 wrote:
LOLMum wrote:but that's the way to beat the opponent down and keep him down all the way in life.

mr giam needs to polish up his speaking skills and be a bit loud too.

give him a few more years and hopefully ..............


politics has no mercy



likewise this forum too. :wink: :evil:

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby Daddy D » Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:36 am

大声就赢....
:rant:

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby HopeandSorrows » Fri Mar 02, 2012 10:49 am

I am really disgusted by the way PAP speaks and belittle the opposition party members in parliament.

:mad:

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby HVR » Fri Mar 02, 2012 11:06 am

Daddy D wrote:I don't like the condescending tone...
:stompfeet:


Actually I watched it on TV. Our DPM didn't sound condescending at all. I can't remember his exact words but he said something like 'might not have caught up with the various schemes', not downright 'you better catch up' or anything to that effect. In addressing another point to LTK, he also emphasis at least 5 to 6 times that he recognised LTK 'has good intention' before explaining the govt's perspective. It was really professional, try to find the clip and watch it.

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby Mdm Koh » Fri Mar 02, 2012 11:57 am

Gerald Giam should know that the government's idea of "affordability" involves burdening people with enormous debts. Of course, everything is affordable, if you can borrow from the bank to pay for it. :slapshead:

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Re: Catch up, DPM Tharman tells WP's Gerald Giam

Postby Lilac66 » Fri Mar 02, 2012 1:50 pm

Good that DPM didn't use a condescending tone like what's perceived after reading the ST. But then I think there's some truth in Gerald having to do some "catching up".

To be able to speak in Parliament to rep the people, he definitely must do his homework and research or he'll expect to be shot down.

If Gerald's beef is still about the rising property prices that are out of reach of young couples, then I beg to differ. During Mah Bow Tan's days, yes. But under KBW, he's really trying to do his best to build as many flats to meet the demand.
The flats are affordable at $150K to $180K for 3 rm flats in newer estates like Seng Kang. They also rolled out 2-rm flats at $80-90K. So in this aspect, I feel they're trying their best.
Last edited by Lilac66 on Fri Mar 02, 2012 4:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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