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  1. #3707
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Indonesian army chief visits Singapore

    Channel NewsAsia
    07 January 2011 1413 hrs

    By Wayne Chan

    SINGAPORE: Indonesia's new military chief Admiral Agus Suhartono is on a visit to Singapore.

    Admiral Agus Suhartono, Indonesia's National Defence Forces (TNI) Commander-in-Chief, called on Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Teo Chee Hean.

    Admiral Suhartono also met his Singapore counterpart, Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General Neo Kian Hong, at the Defence Ministry, on Friday morning.

    Admiral Suhartono will call on Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the Istana Friday afternoon.

    The Ministry of Defence said the visit underscores the long-standing and strong defence ties between Singapore and Indonesia.

    Bilateral exercises such as Exercise Elang Indopura, Exercise Eagle and Exercise Safkar Indopura have further strengthened mutual understanding and defence ties between the two countries' defence forces.

    Admiral Suhartono received the Meritorious Service Medal (Military) in September 2010, when he was the Chief of Naval Staff of the Indonesian Navy, for his outstanding contributions towards enhancing good relations between the Indonesian Navy and the Republic of Singapore Navy.


    Admiral Agus Suhartono (4th, L) inspects the Guard of Honour (photo: MINDEF)
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  2. #3708
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Two lawyers appointed Senior Counsel

    Channel NewsAsia
    07 January 2011 1611 hrs

    By Dylan Loh

    SINGAPORE: Two lawyers with over 50 years of combined experience have been appointed Senior Counsel.

    They are Mr Roderick Martin, 63, and Mr Chan Leng Sun, 46.

    The appointment recognises outstanding advocates and is seen by the legal fraternity as the Singapore equivalent of Britain's Queen's Counsel.

    A committee comprising Singapore's Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong, Attorney-General Sundaresh Menon and Justice of Appeal Chao Hick Tin among others, made the selection.

    Mr Martin entered the legal service in 1972 and was a former Supreme Court Registrar.
    He also taught law at the NUS. Mr Chan served as a United Nations Legal Officer and also published works on international law.

    Mr Martin said: "This appointment (Senior Counsel) is a reflection of past work and standards which have been maintained. And it also points to the standards which have to be maintained in the years to come. So it's really benchmarking a particular standard for future performance."

    Mr Chan said: "The general reputation that goes along with the appointment will be something that might make other clients or other companies, who do not know (about) lawyers in Singapore, first consider that there's this pool of lawyers that they should make enquiries about, (and take it from there.)"

  3. #3709
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    S'pore justice system top in global survey

    Channel NewsAsia
    07 January 2011 1342 hrs

    By S Ramesh

    SINGAPORE: Singapore's justice system has come out tops in an international survey.

    The Rule of Law Index 2010 by the World Justice Project ranked Singapore number one for access to civil justice in the high-income countries group.

    Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong said this at the opening of the new Legal Year on Friday.

    But both the Legal Service and the Bar acknowledged two areas which need attention.

    One aspect which both Chief Justice Chan and the new Attorney-General Sundaresh Menon touched on in their speeches was the small number of Singapore lawyers practising criminal law and the difficulty in attracting young lawyers to practise criminal law.

    Mr Menon said this is a worrying trend.

    He said: "A vibrant criminal Bar is vital for the maintenance of public confidence in the criminal justice system because of the role of the defence in safeguarding the interests of the accused.

    "In my dialogues with the criminal Bar, I was assured of their commitment to raise their profile, their standards and in turn their professional standing so that more young lawyers may be prompted to consider seriously a career in this field. In this way, their constituency, which consists primarily of the average Singaporeans, will be better served."

    Wong Meng Meng, president of the Law Society of Singapore, said: "Criminal practice is a very essential part of our society, especially when a less privileged member of the society gets into trouble. He must have access to good legal services and good criminal lawyers. So that is an area we have to look into."

    The Attorney-General's Chambers is also putting greater focus on financial crimes.

    Mr Menon revealed that a new division, called the Economic Crimes and Governance Division, will be formed and its officers will focus on prosecution of the most sophisticated financial crimes and regulatory offences as well as quasi-criminal matters.

    It is believed that the latest prosecution of the culprits involved in the Singapore Land Authority, Intellectual Property Office of Singapore and of late the Supreme Court cheating cases, will be handled by this new division.

    The Chief Justice also touched on suggestions to publish guidelines on fees charged by lawyers.

    He said: "Clients should be able to make informed choices and that means they should be given the necessary information. The Law Society already has an online directory for the law firms and the types of legal services they provide. Perhaps they should encourage the law firms to publish the range of fees they expect to charge for the more standard forms of the legal work."

    Another area which needs attention is litigation and the availability of top lawyers to appear in Singapore's courts.

    Chief Justice Chan noted that many Senior Counsel in Singapore are not in active practice or appear frequently before the Judges.

    He said: "To maintain our eminence as an international business and financial centre, we should make available to litigants in important commercial and financial disputes a greater diversity of legal representation in our courts. I have discussed this with the Minister for Law. He agrees with me that this is an issue that needs looking into, and he intends to consult the Law Society on it."

    Law Minister K Shanmugam said: "The fact that we don't have a sufficient depth, coupled with a structure, indicates there is an issue. We have an existing mechanism for the admission of Queen's Counsel, ad hoc, and there are different possibilities. The Chief Justice spoke to me and I agreed that is an issue."

    "We are a first-class financial jurisdiction and for that both the international financial institutions as well as the people within Singapore and anyone who wants to use this must have access to the quality legal advice and it is really in that context that Chief Justice made that remark and I accepted that based on my own experience," he added.

    After five years (2004-2008) of practically no growth in the number of practising lawyers, the last two years saw an increase in the number being admitted to the Bar. The figure now stands at some 3,800 lawyers.

    -CNA/wk/ir

    *
    Last edited by Loh; 01-07-2011 at 09:17 PM.

  4. #3710
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    Jan 8, 2011
    Singapore gets top marks in global law survey
    By K. C. Vijayan

    Singapore was rated No.1 in the civil justice systems in the Rule of Law Index 2010 of the World Justice Project. -- PHOTO: SUPREME COURT

    SINGAPORE was rated No.1 in the civil justice systems in the Rule of Law Index 2010 of the World Justice Project.

    It is a project to rank the quality of legal systems in the context of the rule of law.

    The accolade drew the notice of Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong who raised the point in his address at the official opening of the Legal Year ceremony, to underline the star quality of the legal system here. Law Minister K. Shanmugam weighed in on the issue explaining how this had been achieved and said the system here protects the independence of the judiciary, and extremely high-quality judges are appointed from the legal service as well as from the profession.

    Asked about some people still mocking the justice system, he said the 'more they mock, the better we do, so let them keep mocking, we will become better and better as a financial centre, as a city state and as a legal services centre.'

    Separately , Singapore's fight against financial crimes has been beefed up and taken to the next level. Attorney-General Sundaresh Menon in his speech, said a new Economic Crimes and Governance Division has been created, in addition to the current Criminal Justice Division and the State Prosecution Division.

    ' Its officers will focus on and specialise in the prosecution of even the most sophisticated financial crimes, and regulatory offences.' More than 500 guests and members of the legal fraternity were present including Senior Minister S. Jayakumar, High Court judges and law officials from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Brunei.

  5. #3711
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    The Straits Times
    Jan 8, 2011

    Singapore gets top marks in global law survey

    By K. C. Vijayan

    SINGAPORE was rated No.1 in the civil justice systems in the Rule of Law Index 2010 of the World Justice Project.

    It is a project to rank the quality of legal systems in the context of the rule of law.

    The accolade drew the notice of Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong who raised the point in his address at the official opening of the Legal Year ceremony, to underline the star quality of the legal system here. Law Minister K. Shanmugam weighed in on the issue explaining how this had been achieved and said the system here protects the independence of the judiciary, and extremely high-quality judges are appointed from the legal service as well as from the profession.

    Asked about some people still mocking the justice system, he said the 'more they mock, the better we do, so let them keep mocking, we will become better and better as a financial centre, as a city state and as a legal services centre.'

    Separately , Singapore's fight against financial crimes has been beefed up and taken to the next level. Attorney-General Sundaresh Menon in his speech, said a new Economic Crimes and Governance Division has been created, in addition to the current Criminal Justice Division and the State Prosecution Division.

    ' Its officers will focus on and specialise in the prosecution of even the most sophisticated financial crimes, and regulatory offences.' More than 500 guests and members of the legal fraternity were present including Senior Minister S. Jayakumar, High Court judges and law officials from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Brunei.

  6. #3712
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    SINGAPORE : Singapore is on track to stage this year's International Canoe Federation (ICF) Canoe Marathon World Championships in October, the first time the race is staged in Asia.

    This came after the ICF gave the host the thumbs-up following a successful Singapore Canoe Marathon 2011, a test event for the world championships.

    The Singapore Canoe Marathon 2011 got underway at Marina Bay on Sunday, with some 680 paddlers taking to the water.

    They competed in 12 categories, covering distances of 22 to 36 kilometres, with each lap stretching over 4.3km.

    It gave organisers the chance to fine-tune for the world championships, which will be held at the same venue.

    It was smooth sailing, with just minor changes needed, according to the ICF which sent a representative to check on the set-up.

    Among the minor changes include extending the landing ramp and lowering the portage ramp.

    "For the spectators we can do it a little bit different, in that the spectators are on the platform and not at the grandstand. Because when it is at the grandstand, it is too far away for the spectators," said Ruud Heijselaar, member of the Marathon Committee, ICF.

    There will also be a big video screen for the spectators to catch the race.

    Spectators will be entertained with lots of action as the platform will host the portage area, which is akin to a Formula One Pit Stop.

    This is where competitors will get out of the water, carry their boats, dash across a 100-metre distance and get back into the water.

    And Singapore as host will be able to field more Singaporean participants.

    "Traditionally when we compete in Europe, we are only able to send a small team of maybe 4 athletes. We are looking at probably about 32 to 36 athletes to compete in every category ( for the 2011 World Championships)," said Chua Kee Huat, president of the Singapore Canoe Federation.

    Singapore will welcome some 2,000 athletes and officials for the World Championships that will run from October 21-23.

    Another area the organisers are working on is funding. At the moment about 30 per cent of the estimated $1 million budget has been raised, but the Singapore Canoe Federation is confident that it can hit the target over the next few months.

  7. #3713
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Aussie varsity courses in Singapore a big hit

    The Straits Times
    Jan 10, 2011

    20,000 local and foreign students enrolled in programmes

    By Sandra Davie, Senior Writer

    FOUR years after the shock exit of the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Australian universities running degree courses in Singapore are thriving.

    Sydney-based UNSW, which was invited to set up a campus as part of the education hub build-up, pulled out of Singapore in 2007 after just three months, citing poor demand from the region.


    First-year students attending a business law class at Curtin Singapore's two-year-old Balestier Road site. The Singapore campus of the Perth-based university has 1,300 students in its business and nursing degree courses. One big draw is that tuition fees charged by Curtin in Singapore are about 40 per cent less than in Perth. -- ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
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  8. #3714
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls' does it again

    Channel NewsAsia
    10 January 2011 1507 hrs

    SINGAPORE: The 2010 GCE 'O' Level examination results were announced on Monday afternoon at the respective secondary schools of students who sat for the national exam last year.

    The top student is CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls' School's Chia Pei Yun, who scored 10 A1s. The school had produced a top student in the previous 'O' Level exam.

    Meanwhile, three students share the honour in the top Chinese student category. They are Teo Jing Ming (Catholic High School), Choo Hui Ting Felicia (Methodist Girls' School) and Julia Shan-Wen Fung (Singapore Chinese Girls' School), who each scored nine A1s and one A2.

    The top Malay student is Victoria School's Muhammad Amirul Haqim B G, who scored nine A1s.

    Sharing the honour in the top Indian student category are Kashmira, Leah Tom and H Sharanya Pillai from Cedar Girls' Secondary School, Crescent Girls' School and Riverside Secondary School, respectively. The students each scored nine A1s.

    In the top Eurasian student category is Neubronner Daniel Robert of St. Joseph's Institution, who scored nine A1s.

    A total of 37,655 students sat for the examination last year. Of whom, 99.8 per cent -- or 37,598 -- obtained at least one or more GCE 'O' Level passes to be awarded certificates.

    81.2 per cent of those who sat for the exam scored at least five GCE 'O' Level passes. This is 0.1 per cent higher compared with the results in 2009.

    Private candidates would be informed of their results by post. They can also check their results via the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board website from 2pm Monday.

  9. #3715
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Top O-Level student comes from CHIJ St Nicholas

    Channel NewsAsia
    12 January 2009 1542 hrs

    By Hoe Yeen Nie, Channel NewsAsia

    SINGAPORE: CHIJ St Nicholas Girls' 2008 cohort gave the school its best showing in ten years for the O-Level examinations.

    The examinations also saw 36 students getting at least nine distinctions in one sitting this year, almost double the number last year. In 2008, 19 students had at least nine A1s in one sitting.

    CHIJ St Nicholas Girls' also produced this year's top O-Level student - Haw Sue Hern who received 11 distinctions, including an A1 in Chinese, which she sat for in Secondary 3.

    The Malaysian citizen is now back home in Petaling Jaya and plans to become a doctor.

    St Nicholas Girls' School scored an average of 9.4 points, which puts them as one of the top schools this year.

    Over at Catholic High, nervous nail-biting soon gave way to smiles of relief. Its boys lead the national tally for top performers, accounting for a third of students who scored nine A1s in one sitting.

    One of them shares the key to his success. Chan Hua Peng, who scored 10A1s, said: "Just have to keep the faith and keep going forward."

    Also forging ahead is top Malay student Nadiah Nadhirah, who scored a distinction in Chinese, despite taking up the subject only in Secondary One.

    She said: "What we had to do was memorise all these Chinese characters and there were times when I felt like I wanted to quit Chinese. But motivation from my parents, my friends and my teachers enabled me to go all the way up to the O-Levels."

    The student from Riverside Secondary scored seven A1s and two A2s.

    This year's top Indian student is Jharyathri Thiagarajah from Cedar Girls' Secondary.

    The school's aggregate score of 9.0 is also the best in its 52-year history.

    Over 36,600 students sat for the GCE O-Level papers last year, out of which over 80.8 per cent secured at least five O-level passes. That is the minimum requirement to get into a polytechnic.

    The next step for the students is to apply for their schools of choice. For the first time, there will only be one intake at junior colleges. Classes begin on February 2.


    Top Malay student Nadiah Nadhirah Bte Abdul from Riverside Secondary School.

    Top Indian student Jharyathri Thiagarajah from Cedar Girls' Secondary School
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  10. #3716
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Don't try a 'WikiLeaks' here: Shanmugam

    The Straits Times
    Jan 10, 2011

    HOME Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam has warned that anyone caught leaking any official government documents in Singapore, will be 'dealt with firmly.'

    Singapore, among many other countries, was affected by the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks when it released thousands of US cable transcripts.

    In Parliament today, MP for Hong Kah GRC Zaqy Mohamad asked if Singapore plans to implement new measures to prevent classified information from falling into the wrong hands.

    Mr Shanmugam replied that under the Officail Secrets Act, Singapore has clear policies and measures to prevent security breaches which covers even the layman.

    'We believe that everyone involved in a leak of information, whether in Government or outside, should be dealt with firmly. We do not intend to encourage cat and mouse games,' Mr Shanmugam said.

    'Public interest in free flow of information cannot justify the abuse of confidential Government information,' he added.


    'Anyone caught leaking any official government documents in Singapore, will be 'dealt with firmly.' warned HOME Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam. -- PHOTO: AFP
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  11. #3717
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Don't attempt a "WikiLeaks" here

    Channel NewsAsia
    10 January 2011 1530 hrs

    By Imelda Saad

    SINGAPORE: Authorities in Singapore will take a firm stand against any leaks in official government documents.

    The Home Affairs Ministry made this clear in Parliament on Monday in response to questions on the impact of WikiLeaks on Singapore.

    Like many other countries, Singapore was affected by the WikiLeaks revelations of US cables.

    MP for Hong Kah GRC Zaqy Mohamad wanted to know if Singapore plans to implement new measures to prevent classified information from falling into the wrong hands.

    In response, Law Minister K Shanmugam said the country has clear policies and measures to prevent security breaches, under the Official Secrets Act, which covers even the layman.

    The Government has on occasion charged private citizens over their roles in leaking Government data.

    Mr Shanmugam cited a proposed Shield Bill in the US which seeks to prevent such leaks.

    The law applies to all including non-Government employees.

    Opponents of the law in the US argue that this should not apply to private citizens.

    They say freedom of information should be protected, but it is a different approach in Singapore.

    "If recipients of official information who are not themselves public servants cannot be prosecuted or prevented from publishing it, it would create an unacceptable situation where people outside (the) Government would have every incentive to obtain confidential information from public servants in every way possible," Mr Shanmugam said.

    "And public servants would constantly be weighing the benefits to themselves of releasing the confidential information against the likelihood of getting caught and punished.

    "Meanwhile, the broader public interest will suffer.

    "We believe that everyone involved in a leak of information, whether in Government or outside, should be dealt with firmly. We do not intend to encourage cat and mouse games.

    "Public interest in free flow of information cannot justify the abuse of confidential Government information." he said.

    On the same issue, Foreign Affairs Minister George Yeo said the selective disclosure of communications divorced from their context will only serve to sow public confusion.

    He added it would also undermine essential work of governments, particularly when many of the leaks were interpretations of US diplomats on conversations they heard.

    That was the reason Singapore does not comment on specific leaks.

    Mr Yeo added diplomats need to be candid in their analysis, with the assurance of confidentiality.

    "So I think it's not wise for us to go into details (because) then people will ask, 'so you didn't say this? You said this, Did you say that?'

    "And if we allow such a train of questioning, then eventually everything comes out!" Mr Yeo said.

    Describing WikiLeaks as "disastrous" for US diplomacy, Mr Yeo acknowledged that Singapore officials would need to be more guarded, not just in their talks with the US but with any country, given the advent of technology.

    He added the advent of sophisticated miniature recording devices will also mean a loss to human relationships because one "must be able to share more when you trust someone more".

    Mr Yeo also revealed he had called his Malaysian counterpart Anifa Aman following a report in Channel NewsAsia, quoting Mr Anifa as saying that the WikiLeaks incident has a created a setback in bilateral relations.

    The US cables had allegedly quoted remarks made by Singapore diplomats over Malaysia's leadership and politics.

    Mr Yeo said he told Mr Anifa that "there were significant inaccuracies in some of the leaked reports".

    He added both also agreed on the importance of good bilateral relations and strengthening cooperation further.


    In this photo illustration, a 'WikiLeaks' graphic is displayed on a laptop in a cafe.
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  12. #3718
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    Default CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls' does it again

    Channel NewsAsia
    10 January 2011 1507 hrs

    By Vimita Mohandas

    SINGAPORE: The 2010 GCE 'O' Level examination results were announced on Monday afternoon at the respective secondary schools of students who sat for the national exam last year.

    The top student is CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls' School's Chia Pei Yun, who scored 10 A1s. This is the third year the school has produced a top student in the 'O' Level exam.

    But the Malaysian, on a Ministry of Education-ASEAN scholarship, said her learning journey wasn't exactly a walk in the park.

    English and Literature were her toughest subjects.

    "I started reasonably early and over the whole year I put in some consistent work for every test that we got. In the end, it paid off. (Trying) to keep a relaxed mindset helps," said Chia.

    The avid music lover has set her heart on going to a junior college and intends to do some humanitarian work in the future.

    Two others from the school were also among the nation's top students. They scored 9 A1s.

    The school also saw a record 75.8 per cent of students obtaining distinctions for English Language - a 10.3 per cent increase as compared to last year.

    Meanwhile, three students share the honour in the top Chinese student category. They are Teo Jing Ming (Catholic High School), Choo Hui Ting Felicia (Methodist Girls' School) and Julia Shan-Wen Fung (Singapore Chinese Girls' School), who each scored nine A1s and one A2.

    The top Malay student is Victoria School's Muhammad Amirul Haqim Ghazali, who scored nine A1s.

    Following his two older siblings, he took Chinese as a second language.

    While he admits it was difficult, he said it was sheer hard work and tenacity that earned him his distinction.

    Another challenge - keeping his spirits up after his father's illness last year.

    "When my dad had a heart attack, it adversely affected me. It spurred me on to have an ambition to become a heart surgeon, not only to help my family but other people who are stricken with this illness," he said.

    Sharing the honour in the top Indian student category are Kashmira of Cedar Girls' Secondary School, Leah Tom of Crescent Girls' Schools and H Sharanya Pillai of Riverside Secondary School. The students each scored nine A1s.

    In the top Eurasian student category is Neubronner Daniel Robert of St. Joseph's Institution, who scored nine A1s.

    A total of 37,655 students sat for the examination last year. Of whom, 99.8 per cent - or 37,598 - obtained at least one or more GCE 'O' Level passes to be awarded certificates.

    81.2 per cent of those who sat for the exam scored at least five GCE 'O' Level passes. This is 0.1 per cent higher compared with the results in 2009.

    Private candidates would be informed of their results by post. They can also check their results via the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board website from 2pm Monday.


    Chia Pei Yun
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    Default Inaugural Business China Awards handed out

    Channel NewsAsia
    10 January 2011 2252 hrs

    By Kristine Lim

    SINGAPORE : The inaugural Business China Awards, recognising those who helped enhance Sino-Singapore relations, were given out on Monday evening.

    The awards are organised by Business China, an agency launched in 2007 to strengthen economic and social engagements among businessmen.

    Singapore's Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew handed out the awards, which were co-presented by OCBC Bank.

    The China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park got the Enterprise award, while entrepreneur Tao Shing Pee received the Excellence award.

    Local songbird Stefanie Sun won the Young Achiever award, for individuals under 40 years old.

    "I feel very honoured because to me, I'm an entertainer, and the nature of my job does seem a bit frivolous sometimes. But to be able to be recognised for that, I think it's very kind of them," said the singer.


    Stefanie Sun wins the Young Achiever award

    Mr Tao Shing Pee receives the Excellence award
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  14. #3720
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    Default PUB to fight floods with CCTV

    The Straits Times
    Jan 11, 2011

    By Huang Lijie

    NATIONAL water agency PUB is turning to security cameras as it extends its network of monitors in the flood-prone area of Bukit Timah.

    It plans to install five closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras along the Bukit Timah Canal and one at the Jalan Haji Alias outlet drain near Coronation Road West.

    A PUB spokesman said this trial study to monitor real-time conditions in places such as outlet drains and low-lying areas aims to 'allow PUB to respond even faster' to areas prone to flash floods during intense storms.

    She added that the CCTV cameras will complement PUB's current flood management initiatives such as water level sensors installed in key canals and drains.

    To date, PUB has installed 90 such sensors, including at points in the Bukit Timah Canal near Blackmore Drive and Prince of Wales Road.

    PUB's call for tender, which closes today, indicates that it is looking at a system that will allow images captured by the solar-powered CCTV cameras to be accessed via mobile broadband services on devices such as laptops and iPads.

  15. #3721
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    Default In two years, their English grades leapt from F9 to A1

    The Straits Times
    Jan 11, 2011

    It was all hard work, say Crescent Girls from China

    By Jane Ng & Amelia Tan

    A GROUP of China-born students at Crescent Girls' School powered themselves from F9s to A1s for English in just two years.

    Asked for their secret, the girls, who failed English when they started out in Secondary 3 here in January 2009, said sheer hard work and determination made this possible.

    And they did not work on just their English in those two years. All seven scored nine A1s in the O levels they sat last year.

    Then again, they are obviously bright: They all found mathematics here a breeze because they were getting far tougher questions back home; science also presented little difficulty because they had covered Singapore's O-level science syllabus by the time they finished the equivalent of Secondary 3 in China.

    They also found Higher Chinese easy, and most of them chose to take Chinese literature as their humanities subject.

    But English was their Mount Everest. It was one of the reasons they were placed in Secondary 3 here - to give them a year to work at the language - though by age, they should have been in Secondary 4.


    Seven of Crescent Girls' School's top 11 students with 9A1s are from China. (Back row, from left): Zhuo Ran, Zhu Yichen and Zhu Duoduo; (front row, from left): Ying Jiani, Wei Qi, Wei Lu and Zhang Yumeng. All are 17 years old. -- ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM
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  16. #3722
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    Default 677 applications received for Lease Buyback Scheme

    Channel NewsAsia
    10 January 2011 2327 hrs

    SINGAPORE: The HDB has received 677 applications for the Lease Buyback Scheme, as at 31 December 2010.

    338 cases have been approved. Of these, 321 have started receiving their monthly payouts, while the remaining 17 will receive them by this month. The average monthly payout is S$622.

    112 applications were rejected because the applicants did not meet the prevailing eligibility criteria. Another 50 applications were cancelled by the flat owners after re-consideration.

    The remaining 177 applications are being processed.

    Minister for National Development, Mr Mah Bow Tan, said this in a written reply to a parliamentary question on Monday.

    The Lease Buyback Scheme was introduced on 1 March 2009 to allow elderly owners of HDB flats to monetise their units, by selling the tail-end of their flat lease back to HDB in return for cash in monthly payouts.

    The government buys back at market valuation, leaving a 30-year lease for the household.

    The owner may then use the cash to buy a CPF Life annuity, which assures a monthly income for life.

    The scheme is aimed at low-income residents who need financial assistance and who are unable to buy a smaller flat or sublet a room.

    Owners of 2- and 3-room flats are eligible, as well as those who previously owned a 4-room or bigger flat but are currently living in a 3-room or smaller flat.

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    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Integrated healthcare programmes launched

    Channel NewsAsia
    11 January 2011 1359 hrs

    SINGAPORE: Two new programmes focused on the integrated management of chronic and long-term diseases were launched on Tuesday morning, for patients in the eastern region of Singapore.

    The initiative is spearheaded by Changi General Hospital (CGH).

    The Disease Management Unit (DMU) is the central hub for the overall integrated healthcare programme.

    It is made up of a team of nurses who delivers proactive, personalised follow-up care with patients on their medical conditions, through the phone.

    The nurses will monitor patients between medical visits and guide them to manage their medical condition.

    Patients can also call the DMU nurses when they have queries or concerns.

    Patients who have been enrolled in the DMU Diabetes Programme have expressed satisfaction.

    Nearly 400 diabetic patients from CGH have been enrolled in this programme since its pilot in mid-2010.

    More patients are expected to be enrolled in the next few years as the programme is rolled out progressively for other health conditions.

    They include Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), heart disease and failure, stroke and hip fracture.

    Overall, the DMU aims to help improve patients' outcomes by significantly reducing complications arising from chronic and long-term disease and health conditions.

    The Community Health Centres (CHCs) will further strengthen disease management at a community level.

    These centres support the general practitioners and polyclinics by providing healthcare support services to patients to help monitor and manage their conditions.

    DMU nurses will also work with the CHCs to ensure patients adhere to the plan of care provided by their healthcare providers and are regularly followed-up.

    The first CHC is located in Tampines, with others being planned for surrounding neighbourhoods in eastern Singapore.

    The programmes were launched by Health Minister Khaw Boon Wan.

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