Rapid CPF Proposals

Has anyone digested the new CPF proposals from the panel led by Prof Tan Chorh Chuan? I certainly haven’t, but guess what? On the day of the publication of the new proposals, the manpower minister’s letter accepting every single proposal in their entirety was also published alongside!

Isn’t it amazing how the govt can properly evaluate and agree to such radical proposals as slashing the minimum sum by half in less than the time you and I take to read the entire msm article on the proposals? That’s why our ministers are worth millions of dollars per year, they’re so efficient!

But personally I find the rapid ‘acceptance’ of all the proposals rather strange. I’ve never seen such well-thought out proposals that are accepted without a single question. I’ve also never seen proposals accepted so rapidly. And I find it strange that this govt can just accept such wide-ranging proposals without even giving parliament a chance to debate the proposals. In fact, I’d have expected the govt to go on a road show to sell the new proposals to the public, to take months on the road, presenting the proposals at dialogue sessions, consulting, explaining, persuading and then refining the proposals before putting them to a parliamentary vote.

Granted, there is no constitutional requirement for the govt to do any such thing. It does not need to organize a referendum to pass cpf changes. It does not even need to get parliament’s approval to make changes to the cpf rules.

Yet, cpf is such a hot button issue that if I were pm, I would want to know the mood of the people on this issue. I would explain, I would sell the proposals at dialogues held at libraries, cc’s, town halls, tv talk shows, etc. I would enlist my mp’s to do the same, get feedback. And I would then modify or even reject some of the panel’s recommendations if I find they lack popular support. And then I would put it to a parliamentary vote before I changed the rules.

But of course, what do I know about politics? I’m only a writer, while the pm is a $4m pa dollar man. If lky was able to change the whole cpf system overnight on the basis of just one report by Howe yoon Chong, surely LHL can do just as well by changing the cpf system on the basis of one panel’s recommendation.

Why waste time consulting or selling policies right? After all, the pap doesn’t do things that are popular, it only does things that are right for the country. Therefore, when you know you’re right, you should just do it. We don’t care about opinion polls or what people think, do we?


About politicalwritings

Someone who sees beyond PAP and "opposition" in Singapore politics. To understand more please see the Top 10 link below.
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3 Responses to Rapid CPF Proposals

  1. Sy Tan says:

    For sure the CPF proposal must have been released to the government sometime before Prof Tan released it to the public so it is not a case of the government agreeing to it within mere minutes or hours – the committee could not have not exercised this simple courteous act which would be practised in any business / official transaction. The government may also well have been given time to comment on it to the committee prior to the press release. Certainly, the proposal does not go all the way and could be improved on but it does provide some good suggestions, eg. in the three different retirement packages.

  2. Chai Yen Lim says:

    thanks for all your writings in the pass and I have benefited a lot from reading your wisdoms.
    I have talk to lots of people from men in the streets, hawkers, housewives and self-employed. I am very worried about PAP self thinking of what is right or their self protection in the meet the people session in time to come(asking for more help). The true is both sides are not talking to each others! The people thinks it is their money and they have the right to do what they want! Worst, rumours have been spreading around that the government have been talking the CPF money for investment and had lost all! (there are some evidences but not all true as PAP refuse to be transparent about the reserves and the use of CPF money except reporting that it is use to buy Singapore Government Bond) The government for all their good intentions thinks that the people will spent all their CPF money once it is allow to give it at 55 years old!(some true but not all).

    This will lead to what a very very unfortunate outcome of what the Chinese call ” Miss Calculate ” and the coming election pose for a good show down! There are many good things about Singapore when you compare anywhere 2 degree North of Equator around the world. We have that best living standard within 2 degree North of Equator! But to put this hot political potatoes to rest require Political Wisdom!.

    1. PAP will never be transparent in the CPF money or the reserve!
    2. The people thinks it is their money and demand to take back or where is the money!
    3. CPF Life at 55 years and pay you slowly at 65 years is never in the people mind!

    I suggest to go in between.

    The CPF money from CPF life is about 80 billion
    Every cohort coming in at 55 is getting more and more as the baby boomers in the 50s and 60s end
    Estimate to be a Million. The CPF life is a pension scheme which need 10 years of buy time to start to pay back. Every insurance scheme is the same……

    I suggest the Government inject a “Seed Money” and start the CPF life with payment at immediate effect. That money should somewhere between 20 to 40 billion. This will make the CPF life immediate payable and men in the street will not thinking that you are taking them for ride. In addition, it will show the Singaporean that the government is funding the retirement scheme partially
    and making a reward when you and me have work hard for the last 30 years and it is an dividend for the hard work!

    Conclusion, To top up 20 to 40 billion is a small sum compare to the huge reserve we have! Not doing it and maintain the current stalemate will lead to what I am very worried the great ” Miss Caculate” that even LKY is worried about!

    I leave with the most LKY quote from

    “One man, one vote is a most difficult of government. From time to time the results can be erratic. People are sometimes fickle. They bet bored with stable, steady improvements in life, and in a reckless moment they vote for a change for change’s sake.

    They current Political Climate is definitely not reckless or change for change’s sake!


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