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  1. #8552
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Singaporean table tennis starlet Isabelle Li defends foreign-born teammates

    Yahoo Sports


    Fri, Aug 8, 2014 5:12 PM SGT


    Isabelle Li Siyun at the World Team Table Tennis Championships in 2014. REUTERS/Toru Hanai


    By Teng Kiat

    Despite its roaring success at the recently-concluded Commonwealth Games, Singapore’s table tennis team received widespread scorn for fielding a large number of players originally hailing from China.

    Even national athletes piled on the criticism, with one revealing a lack of interaction between the naturalised paddlers and other local sportspersons.

    But Isabelle Li Siyun, one of two Singapore-born players in the team alongside 18-year-old Clarence Chew, begs to differ.

    “I spend a lot of time with them because we have training and we go on overseas trips [together],” she explained, during the team’s visit to primary schools on the eve of National Day. “We do not just train together, we do life together and I think they really see Singapore as their home.”

    Stepping up

    Set to turn 20 at the end of August, Li has come a long way from the cherubic, short-haired teen who first captured Singapore’s attention as the youngest-ever player to don national colours at just 11.



    Isabelle Li playing at the Youth Olympic Games. (Photo courtesy of SSC)

    She burst onto the scene at the 2010 Youth Olympic Games, bagging a singles silver medal on home soil, before transitioning into the senior team near the end of 2013 on the back of a highly successful campaign on the junior circuit.

    Having helped the women to gold in the team event at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Li now hopes to play a bigger part in the paddlers’ future successes.

    She has embarked on a full-time training schedule since graduating from Republic Polytechnic in May, and Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) president Dr Lee Bee Wah believes Li is ready to shoulder more responsibility.

    “Immediately after the Games, I had a talk with Isabelle and I told her [while] this is her very first one, we hope that for the next one four years later, she can be a key player and we expect her to play two singles [matches, as opposed to one currently],” Lee stated.




    Credit: Commonwealth Games Singapore

    Yahoo Newsroom
    Sun, Jul 27, 2014 10:00 PM SGT

    Global star in the making?

    While Li has various team medals in her collection, she has yet to truly emerge from the shadow of current, more experienced teammates Feng Tianwei (world No. 5) and Yu Mengyu (No. 18), as well as former ones like Li Jiawei and Wang Yuegu.

    But Isabelle, who now sports a long pony-tail, feels she is ready to step up and has targeted the 2015 SEA Games as her platform.

    “My aim is definitely a gold medal and I hope to be one of the leaders of the Singapore team, especially when it’s played locally, as that has a special significance to it,” the two-time SEA Games silver medalist declared.

    “I’m really looking forward to it and I am confident of my ability because I have played in two SEA Games and I am confident that I will be able to do it.”




    Isabelle Li at the World Team Classic Table Tennis in 2013. AFP PHOTOSTR/AFP/Getty Images


    She has the full backing of her coach Jing Junhong, who believes her protégé has the potential to go far.

    “Since she turned full-time, the speed of her progress has been very evident,” the former national star pointed out. “As for next year’s SEA Games, I think she can assume the mantle of leading the table tennis team if things go as according to the current training plan.”

    Jing also feels that Isabelle can even crack the top 10 of the world rankings in future, likening her current playing style to the China’s world No. 4 Wu Yang, but warns the process will be an arduous one.

    “It’s down to whether her resolve to get there [to world-class standards] is strong, because this path is very difficult and takes a long time,” she asserted. “2020 might be the time when she peaks. For now, it’s only the beginning for her.”



    Mutual inspiration


    Together with the rest of Singapore’s female and male paddlers, as well as Dr Lee, Li visited Maris Stella High and Montfort Junior School on Friday morning as part of the schools’ National Day celebrations.

    The athletes received enthusiastic receptions at both campuses and had the students cheering loudly when they sparred with members of the schools’ table tennis teams.

    Li and Chew both expressed hope they have demonstrated to aspiring athletes that it is possible to succeed while balancing studies and sports.

    “They have inspired me with their energy and enthusiasm; it was really child-like faith,” said Li of the secondary school students. “It made me feel younger just to be here and I hope we have inspired these kids to pursue their dreams and be bold.”

    Their message came across strongly to Maris Stella’s Dominic Wong, this year’s individual champion for the senior boys category at the National Primary School Table Tennis Championships.

    “I watched almost all the games,” the Primary Six student recalled of the Glasgow tournament. “I was inspired and I hope that I can be like them in the future.”
    Last edited by Loh; 08-10-2014 at 10:23 PM.

  2. #8553
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Deloitte unveiled as latest partner for Singapore 2015 SEA Games

    http://www.insidethegames.biz/anoc/c...2015-sea-games Thursday, 07 August 2014




    By Nick Butler

    Financial giants Deloitte have been unveiled as the Official Professional Services partner for the Singapore 2015 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games.

    Deloitte, one of the world's "Big Four" professional services firms, is now the third Tier One sponsor for the region's most prestigious multi-sport Games, first held in Bangkok in 1959.

    They are following in the footsteps of other sponsors, such as Singaporean telecommunications company SingTel and supermarket chain NTUC FairPrice and the FairPrice Foundation, unveiled earlier this year.

    It is hoped Deloitte will build upon their expertise in supporting other sporting events such as the Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 Olympic Games, as well as the inaugural Summer Youth Olympics, also held in Singapore, in 2010.
    As well as a further boost in international recognition for the biennial event, they will pledge SGD$5 million (£2.4 million/$4 million/€3 million) in cash and value-in-kind services such as advisory, assurance and consulting.

    "We are honoured to be appointed the Official Professional Services Partner for the 28th SEA Games," said Chaly Mah, chairman of Deloitte Singapore and chief executive of Deloitte Southeast Asia.

    "Just as we have delivered exceptionally to the Olympic Movement, we hope to deliver innovative solutions to the Organising Committee.

    "We believe that we will have a strong and enduring partnership because of our common values, including our commitment to excellence in delivery, spirit of innovation and desire to contribute positively to our community."

    Derek Wong, Singapore's top badminton player who won two medals at the recent Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, is among many top athletes provided with employment opportunities by Deloitte ©Getty Images



    Among other sporting innovations already pioneered by the company is the "Deloitte Ignite" programme, in which employment opportunities, both full-time and part-time, are provided to national athletes to help them develop their future careers alongside their sporting ones.

    Such employees include Derek Wong, Singapore's current top badminton player and Commonwealth Games silver and bronze medallist, and netballer Suhailah Binte Kariman.

    This also showcases Deloitte's diversity, it is claimed, allowing employees who are athletes and non-athletes alike to interact and share with each other different unique skills, mindsets and experiences that are "mutually enriching and build a great team spirit".

    Deloitte will continue this line of work with regard to the SEA Games, offering a flexible range of skills across a number of different operational areas as well as contributing, through volunteering, to the goal of building a truly memorable Games for Singaporeans and regional visitors, and a legacy long after their conclusion.

    "Deloitte has been involved in sports locally and globally," said Richard Seow, chairman of the Sponsorship and Marketing Advisory Sub-Committee at Singapore 2015.

    "They have very good knowledge of sport and have the passion for it.

    "We are pleased to partner them as they not only help us during pre-Games and Games time, but also to build a legacy where all of us, sporting fraternity and sponsors, can learn and up the benchmark in organising sporting events.

    "With Deloitte onboard, we have officially surpassed our halfway mark of target sponsorship amount for these 28th SEA Games."

    The Games are due to take place from June 5 to 16, with 36 sports to be showcased, including 24 that are also on the Olympic programme.

    Contact the writer of this story at nick.butler@insidethegames.bizThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    Related stories
    June 2014: Singapore 2015 SEA Games secures major telecommunications sponsor
    May 2014: Four Olympic disciplines among six sports added to programme for Singapore 2015 SEA Games

  3. #8554
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    Default Renowned German training for poly grads

    Work-study scholarships aim to develop innovative, skilled engineers


    Published on Aug 12, 2014 6:54 AM

    [/URL]

    Mr Pang Shun Toll, 21, a Singapore Polytechnic graduate in aeronautical engineering, will alternate between three months' study and three months' work in Germany at Pepperl+Fuchs, a leader in electronic sensors. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

    - ST PHOTO: SANDRA DAVIE ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO



    Ms Tham Shi Yi, 23, who studied precision engineering at Nanyang Polytechnic, admires the skill and innovation of German engineers. -- ST PHOTO: SANDRA DAVIE

    By Sandra Davie Senior Education Correspondent

    With their almost perfect grade point average of 4, polytechnic graduates Tham Shi Yi and Pang Shun Toll could have easily landed a place in a local university with a scholarship to boot.

    Instead, they are heading to Germany for three to four years, where they will alternate between semesters of work and study.

    Both graduates, who will go through an intensive German language course, hope the renowned German training will turn them into highly skilled engineers with an innovative mind.

    They are among the first eight recipients of a scholarship available to polytechnic graduates from this year.


    Background story

    MANY ADVANTAGES

    A well-planned practical work curriculum alongside university studies can complement hands-on learning and allow students to experience engineering companies' operations first-hand. Furthermore, the candidates will be considered preferably for employment with the sponsor companies upon their graduation.

    - EDB deputy managing director Quek Swee Kuan
    Last edited by Loh; 08-12-2014 at 12:14 AM.

  4. #8555
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Renowned German training for poly grads

    Work-study scholarships aim to develop innovative, skilled engineers




    Published on Aug 12, 2014 6:54 AM

    [/URL]
    Mr Pang Shun Toll, 21, a Singapore Polytechnic graduate in aeronautical engineering, will alternate between three months' study and three months' work in Germany at Pepperl+Fuchs, a leader in electronic sensors. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

    - ST PHOTO: SANDRA DAVIE ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO




    Ms Tham Shi Yi, 23, who studied precision engineering at Nanyang Polytechnic, admires the skill and innovation of German engineers. -- ST PHOTO: SANDRA DAVIE

    By Sandra Davie Senior Education Correspondent

    With their almost perfect grade point average of 4, polytechnic graduates Tham Shi Yi and Pang Shun Toll could have easily landed a place in a local university with a scholarship to boot.

    Instead, they are heading to Germany for three to four years, where they will alternate between semesters of work and study.

    Both graduates, who will go through an intensive German language course, hope the renowned German training will turn them into highly skilled engineers with an innovative mind.

    They are among the first eight recipients of a scholarship available to polytechnic graduates from this year.



    Background story

    MANY ADVANTAGES

    A well-planned practical work curriculum alongside university studies can complement hands-on learning and allow students to experience engineering companies' operations first-hand. Furthermore, the candidates will be considered preferably for employment with the sponsor companies upon their graduation.

    - EDB deputy managing director Quek Swee Kuan

  5. #8556
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Nine new NMPs to give fresh ideas on ageing, heritage, economic restructuring

    Published on Aug 11, 2014 6:34 PM




    SPD president Chia Yong Yong at the media briefing of Society for the Physically Disabled (SPD) Charity Show 2013 on Feb 26, 2013. -- PHOTO: ST FILE




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...12-211814e.jpg

    Profile of Prof Tan Tai Yong, Vice Provost (Student Life), NUS and Director of the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS). -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE



    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...n25-11814e.jpg

    Ms Kuik Shiao-Yin is the co-founder and creative director of The Thought Collective, a social enterprise. -- PHOTO: ST FILE



    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...s23-11814e.jpg

    Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI) president Thomas Chua. -- PHOTO: ST FILE




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...nmp-11814e.jpg

    K. Karthikeyan, vice-president of the NTUC Central Committee and General Secretary of the United Workers of Petroleum Industry. -- PHOTO: NTUC




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...p12-11814e.jpg

    Ms Rita Soh Siow Lan, Architect, Director, RDC Architects Pte Ltd President, Singapore Board of Architects. -- PHOTO: RDC ARCHITECTS




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...css-11814e.jpg

    Dr Benedict Tan, 43, president of the Singapore Sailing Federation. -- PHOTO: ST FILE




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...cta-11814e.jpg

    Labour economist Randolph Tan speaking at the Singapore's Employment Outlook 2013 seminar. -- PHOTO: SIM




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...ail-11814e.jpg

    Mr Mohd Ismail Bin Hussein, a banker and a director of the Association of Muslim Professionals. -- PHOTO: BUSINESS TIMES FILE


    By Charissa Yong

    SINGAPORE - A disabled lawyer, a veteran historian and a social entrepreneur are among nine people who have been selected to be new Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs) to provide fresh perspectives on the social and economic challenges facing Singapore in the coming years.

    They are Ms Chia Yong Yong, 52; Prof Tan Tai Yong, 51; and Ms Kuik Shiao-Yin, 37 respectively.

    The other six nominees are: Singapore Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Thomas Chua, 60; veteran unionist K. Karthikeyan, 55; Singapore Board of Architects president Rita Soh, 55; doctor and former national sailor Benedict Tan, 47; labour economist Randolph Tan, 50; and Mohd Ismail Bin Hussein, 51, a banker and a director of the Association of Muslim Professionals, said the Clerk of Parliament in a statement on Monday.

    The selection panel looked for new NMPs who could add to important issues Singapore faced in this term of government, said Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen, who is leader of the House and a member of the selection committee.

  6. #8557
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Three MRT stations to offer Wi-Fi from Aug 22

    Published on Aug 11, 2014 3:56 PM


    Raffles Place MRT is one of three stations where commuters will get to enjoy free Wi-Fi access at platform level from August 22. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

    By Lee Jian Xuan

    SINGAPORE - Commuters at City Hall, Orchard and Raffles Place - three of Singapore's busiest MRT stations - will enjoy free Wi-Fi access at platform level from August 22, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) announced on Monday.

    Platforms at another 21 stations, including all those on the North-East Line, will also get Wi-Fi access progressively over the next nine months. Posters and stickers will be displayed at stations to indicate that the platforms are Wi-Fi-connected.

    The Infocomm Development Authority will arrange for officers to be on hand during the roll-out to help commuters connect to the free Wireless@SG service.

    To get access, users can register with the four telcos either online or at their customer service centres. The four operators are M1, Singtel, Starhub and Y5Zone.

  7. #8558
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Straits Times FB post of MP's selfie with former PM Lee Kuan Yew gets 40,000 likes

    Published on Aug 11, 2014 12:39 PM



    Selfie taken by Mr Teo Ser Luck, Minister of State at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, with (Left to right) former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Health, Mr Heng Chee How, Senior Minister of State, Prime Minister’s Office and Ms Indranee Rajah, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Law.
    SOURCE: TEO SER LUCK/ INDRANEE RAJAH




    http://www.straitstimes.com/sites/st...11/mrLKY2e.jpg

    Mr Teo Ser Luck, Minister of State at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, taking a selfie at the National Day Parade 2014. SOURCE: KEVIN LIM


    A photograph of MP Teo Ser Luck taking a selfie of former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew at the National Day Parade has gone viral.

    A Straits Times Facebook post on it (http://bit.ly/1mwlRYy) reached 1.2 million people, got 170,000 post clicks and 43,000 likes, comments and shares.

    Almost all the comments were in appreciation of the 90-year-old senior statesman's efforts in transforming Singapore.

    “Thank you Mr Lee! Without your vision and conviction, Singapore will probably not be what it is today. A big thank you to Mr Lee and the rest of our founding fathers.” said Facebook user Davis Koh.

    “I'm glad to see you were at NDP 2014 Mr Lee,” added fellow user Fauziah Mohd Shariff , “you remind me of what it means by resilience and can do spirit. Thank you for having the vision and courage to build Singapore!”

    Mr Teo, who is also Minister of State at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, was sitting in front of Mr Lee when he raised his right hand to take the shot.

    While he didn't post it on Facebook, other MPs such as Ms Indranee Rajah, who was in the shot, did.

    Her Facebook post, 'Great to be celebrating NDP with Mr Lee Kuan Yew! #NDP2014' was liked by about 5,500 users.
    Last edited by Loh; 08-12-2014 at 02:39 AM.

  8. #8559
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Lee Hsien Loong reflects on his decade as PM



    Lee Hsien Loong reflects on his decade as PM, is thankful for support and chance to serve


    Published on Aug 12, 2014 12:27 PM


    Mr Lee Hsien Loong at his swearing in ceremony on Aug 12, 2004. (Former president S.R. Nathan is on his left). -- PHOTO: ST FILE


    By Charissa Yong

    SINGAPORE - Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong reflected on his decade as Singapore's top political leader on Tuesday, saying he was grateful for the chance to serve the country and for the support he received.

    He was sworn in as Prime Minister 10 years ago on Aug 12, 2004, after 20 years in politics.

    10 years ago today I was sworn in as PM. Grateful for this opportunity to serve. - LHL http://t.co/7TNJXd0OQb pic.twitter.com/qLPEahKN61

    — Lee Hsien Loong (@leehsienloong) August 12, 2014

    "I learn much from the people I meet, those who write to me, and those following me on social media. Your views and insights have shown me what we are doing well, and where we need to do better. Your support and engagement means a lot to me," wrote Mr Lee, 62, on Facebook.

    He also thanked volunteers, grassroots leaders and supporters for giving their time and energy generously: "You make it much easier for me and the government to do things for Singaporeans."

    Mr Lee also thanked Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, who was his immediate predecessor and Singapore's second prime minister.

    "(Mr Goh) handed over to me a ship in good shape, and has continued to help me guide it safely, through fair winds and stormy seas," wrote Mr Lee.

    He has had an eventful decade at the helm, with Singapore experiencing a difficult recession during the 2008-2009 global financial crisis and greater political contestation at the polls.

    Under Mr Lee's charge, a wide range of social policy packages were rolled out, such as the ComCare Fund to provide financial help to needy families, Workfare Bonus to top up the pay of lower-wage workers and the $8 billion Pioneer Generation package to help pioneers with healthcare bills.

    Mr Goh himself had earlier taken to social media to to wish Mr Lee well, and to congratulate him for "steering Singapore through choppy waters".

    Wrote Mr Goh: "But the tougher stretch lies ahead. Keep your eyes on the sea of challenges. And harbour the interests of all on board in your heart. You have a tough job. We don't envy you. But we are behind you. All the best, mate."

    Mr Lee promised that he and his team will continue to do their best for Singapore
    Last edited by Loh; 08-12-2014 at 03:35 AM.

  9. #8560
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Noise barriers at Anak Bukit Flyover ready by October



    Artist's impression of the noise barriers at Anak Bukit Flyover. Photo: Land Transport Authority


    Published: 1:08 PM, August 12, 2014


    SINGAPORE — Noise barriers will be installed at Anak Bukit Flyover from today (Aug 12), and should bring some respite for residents living nearby from road traffic noise, said the Land Transport Authority (LTA).

    The barriers, built to a height of 6m, are expected to reduce the noise generated by traffic plying the Anak Bukit Flyover, which was widened recently. The installation is expected to be completed by this October, the LTA added in its statement.

    Commenting on the initiative, Bukit Batok East Grassroots Advisor Halimah Yacob said: “I am glad that LTA has been most receptive to our feedback as I was told that this is the first time such noise barriers are built.

    “Whilst the road widening is necessary because of the heavy traffic flow along that stretch of road, the installation of the noise barriers show how working in partnership with the agencies can help to reduce disruptions to residents.”

    The location is the first of three where noise barriers will be installed, as the LTA assesses the effectiveness of such barriers in reducing road traffic noise. The other two locations are along West Coast Highway near Block 44, Telok Blangah Drive, and the new flyover along Braddell Road near Block 138, Bishan Street 12, it said.

    “The trial implementation of noise barriers are part of LTA’s efforts to mitigate noise levels and improve our living environment as Singapore becomes increasingly built-up and more people live closer to busy roads,” said the LTA.

    CHANNEL NEWSASIA

  10. #8561
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default New centre to provide hands-on training, mentoring for pre-school teachers



    A teacher and a volunteer with pre-schoolers at the new St James’ Church Kindergarten Preschool Practicum Centre. Photo: Siau Ming En



    By Siau Ming En
    siaumingen@mediacorp.com.sg -

    Published: 12:59 PM, August 12, 2014


    SINGAPORE – In a move to raise the level of training for pre-school teachers in Singapore, the Lien Foundation and St James’ Church Kindergarten today (Aug 12) unveiled their pre-school practicum centre, which will provide structured training for the practicum component of a pre-school trainee teacher’s diploma, degree or masters course.

    It aims to help develop the teachers in areas like classroom management, lesson planning delivery, curriculum development, among other things.

    A common problem among pre-school teachers here is the lack of hands-on training and coaching during their attachment, said the Lien Foundation. Chief Executive Lee Poh Wah noted that it is then crucial to ensure preschool teachers are meaningfully engaged and mentored by experienced practitioners at seminal points of their training.

    At the new centre, trainee pre-school teachers will thus also receive close guidance under the mentoring of host teachers and mentor supervisors - who are specifically in charge of this programme.

    The centre opened in April and 15 trainees — from SEED institute, Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Singapore Polytechnic — have since graduated from their programme. The centre is able to train up to 300 pre-school trainee teachers each year.

  11. #8562
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default Equestrian ballet

    Today


    Media preview of new stage show Cavalia, at the Entertainment Quarter,...

    [More]


    Photo: Cavalia


    Published: 4:03 AM, August 13, 2014

    There was plenty of horsing around along Bayfront Avenue when the venue known as Under The White Theatre Tent played host to the opening show of Cavalia last night.

    Conceived by Normand Latourelle, a co-founder of Cirque du Soleil, the show, dubbed an “equestrian ballet”, features acrobats, aerialists, stunt riders and 50 equine performers, which arrived here just over a week ago from Brussels. “It’s not just a dance show; it’s a story about love and life, and we hope the audience can take away their interpretations of that,” Mr Latourelle told TODAY.

    Unlike traditional horse shows, Cavalia’s stage features a 50m-wide stage to allow the horses space to gallop at full speed while their human counterparts perform riding stunts.

    Read our review of the show tomorrow.
    Tina Villareal, PHOTOS: CAVALIA


    Sneak Peek: Cirque du Soleil-style equine show Cavalia



    Fifty animals fly here "first class" and are kept happy and healthy for their performance here.



    The Straits Times

    Published on Aug 5, 2014 12:48 PM












    Sneak peek of Cavalia: A Magical Encounter Between Human and Horse. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

    By Cheryl Mui

    Fifty horses have arrived in Singapore and they are stars of a theatrical extravaganza called Cavalia: A Magical Encounter Between Man And Horse.

    The multimedia and multi-disciplinary production, which runs from Aug 12 to Sept 14, features the horses and 42 international stunt riders, aerialists, acrobats, dancers and musicians.

    They will perform under the White Theatre Tent at Bayfront Avenue, next to Marina Bay Sands. Each show runs for 21/2 hours, including a 30-minute intermission. The show is presented by Mediacorp Vizpro International and Base Entertainment Asia.

    It was created by Canadian Normand Latourelle, who co-founded the famed Cirque du Soleil and was with the group from 1985 to 1990.

    The horses in the show come from Canada, Europe, Australia and the United States. The 11 breeds include the Quarter Horse, Arabian, Paint Horse, pure Spanish breed, Percheron, Australian Stock Horse, Lusitano, Comtoise, Criollo, Warmblood and miniature.

  12. #8563
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    Default 10 things you should know about Nominated Members of Parliament

    Published on Aug 12, 2014 8:21 PM



    Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs) make their maiden appearance in the House in this photo taken on Feb 14, 2012. -- PHOTO: ST FILE


    1. When the Bill to allow up to six Nominated MPs first came before Parliament in 1990, it drew fierce debate with several PAP backbenchers objecting to opening a back door into the House for people unwilling to contest elections.

    The Bill is passed and later that year, the first batch of two NMPs enter Parliament.

    2. In 1995, Dr Kanwaljit Soin, the first woman NMP, tables the Family Violence Bill. It does not pass, but some of her suggestions are subsumed under the Women's Charter.



    Her fellow NMP Walter Woon, a law professor, passes the first Private Member's Bill, the Maintenance of Parents Act. A Private Member's Bill is one not tabled by a minister.



    3. In 1996, Dr Lee Tsao Yuan, an economist and then-director of the Institute of Policy Studies, coins the phrase the Singapore dream - to describe the aspirations of the young to own properties and cars, sparking off nationwide debate about what the dream is and should be.



    4. In 1997, the number of NMPs is increased from six to nine to fill the void left by the departure of two elected opposition MPs who lost their seats in the General Election that took place at the start of that year.

    Three panels: business and industry, the professions, and the labour movement are set up to suggest candidates.

    5. In 2000, NMP and businessman Zulkifli Baharudin pushes for space for free speech.

    It is initially rejected by the Government, who feared the country was not mature enough but later approved and evolves into the Speakers' Corner in Hong Lim Park.



    6. In 2002, NMPs' terms were extended from two years to at least two-and-a-half to prevent what happened to the sixth batch of NMPs from recurring.

    Two new candidates had served only 17 days when Parliament was dissolved for the 2001 election.

    Another three panels are set up: social and community circle, the media, arts and sports, and the polytechnics and universities.

    7. In 2007, Mr Siew Kum Hong, a lawyer, requests to repeal Section 377A of the Penal Code, which criminalises *** between men. He does not succeed. His impassioned speech spurs strong rebuttals from fellow MPs who disagreed with him.



    8. In 2008, Prof Thio Li-Ann, a constitutional law expert, and Dr Loo Choon Yong, executive chairman of Raffles Medical Group, file a motion asking that a by-election be required by law if the minority member or half or more members of a GRC slate vacate their seats mid-term. The majority vote against this, but they are praised by both PM Lee and the blogging community for raising the standard of debate in Parliament.



    9. In 2009, NMPs are made a permanent fixture.

    Previously, each Parliament elected after a General Election had to vote if they wanted NMPs for the next round.

    10. There have been 65 NMPs, with another nine from the latest batch to be appointed by the President on Aug 26.

    The youngest NMP to date is actress and former beauty queen Eunice Olsen, who entered Parliament at age 27 in 2004.



    Dr Jennifer Lee Gek Choo, then-chief executive of KK Women's and Children's Hospital, was the longest serving NMP, clocking in three terms and a total of four years six months (1999 - 2004).

    Last edited by Loh; 08-12-2014 at 10:44 PM.

  13. #8564
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    Default Dick Lee to write 'the next Home' for S'pore's 50th NDP

    Published on Aug 11, 2014 7:49 AM



    Dick Lee (right) with music director Sydney Tan (left) and film-maker Boo Junfeng, the creative team behind this year's NDP. They will work on next year's parade as well. -- ST PHOTO: STEFFI KOH

    By Jermyn Chow Defence Correspondent


    After being lauded for staging an engaging National Day Parade (NDP) this year, Dick Lee will return to helm next year's golden jubilee show; and he has been tasked to write the next big National Day song.

    The 57-year-old singer-songwriter, who was also creative director of the 2002 and 2010 shows, said next year's parade organisers have asked him to compose a theme song for Singapore's 50th birthday, which will be celebrated at the Padang.

    The new song will hopefully surpass the popularity of his iconic Home, which has become one of the best-loved NDP songs, and is sung at every parade.

    "The expectations on me to produce an anthem as memorable as Home are quite daunting, but I've already started doing some research to get inspiration," Lee told The Straits Times. "It is not just an NDP song but a song that reflects and celebrates Singapore's 50 years of independence."

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    Default Officers who quelled riot get National Day honours



    Honoured Home Team officers (from left): Staff sergeant Mydeen Sahul Hameed, assistant superintendant of police (ASP) Edwin Yong Wen Wei, ASP Jonathan Tang Wenhao and senior station inspector (2) Akhbar Ali. PHOTO: ERNEST CHUA


    Five SPF officers and five other Home Team officers awarded the Commendation Medal in recognition of their role


    By Tan Shi Wei

    -
    tanshiwei@mediacorp.com.sg -

    Published: 4:03 AM, August 13, 2014


    SINGAPORE — They were used to handling simple disputes, such as breaking up drunken brawls at Clarke Quay, but on Dec 8, a group of Home Team officers found themselves in the thick of Singapore’s first riot in 40 years.

    “The information didn’t come to us (that it was) a riot. It came in as bits and pieces, but you would (be able to) pick up that something was not right — in the sense that there was a rowdy crowd and an accident,” said assistant superintendant of police (ASP) Jonathan Tang, 29, who was a team leader at Tanglin Police Division at the time of the riot.

    On Saturday, ASP Tang, four colleagues from the Singapore Police Force (SPF) and five other Home Team officers were awarded the Commendation Medal in this year’s National Day honours in recognition of the roles they played in quelling the riot.

    In a media interview with ASP Tang and three of the SPF recipients, the officers said based on the initial information they received, they had not expected the situation that night to escalate into a full-scale riot.

    “At that point in time, people were gathering and that was all (the information) we had,” said ASP Tang.

    The police officers did not expect to arrive at a scene where a bus lay in shambles, emotions ran high among a growing alcohol-induced crowd and life-threatening projectiles were hurled in their direction.

    Although the police officers barely had time to register what was happening, their training kicked in and they began to assume various roles to bring the situation under control.

    Senior station inspector (2) Akhbar Ali, 44, whose vehicle was overturned by the crowd, said: “I don’t think we had any thoughts of fear, because that is our job ... We needed to look after the safety of our own officers, members of the public and even the rioters themselves.”

    When asked about the public scrutiny that they faced, along with criticisms that had been levelled at the police in the aftermath of the riot, the officers said these were not uncommon in their line of work.

    “I think it is nothing unusual, because a lot of what the police do is under public scrutiny,” said ASP Edwin Yong, 29.

    “Ultimately, if in our hearts we know that we have done it right and to the best of our abilities, I think our conscience is clear and there is no need to be affected by it.”

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    Default Queenstown launches heritage blueprint 2020

    Published on Aug 13, 2014 11:02 AM


    The Masjid Mujahidin, located along Queensway (Stirling Road), as photographed on July 27, 2014. Queenstown, the country's first satellite estate, will get a network of six neighbourhood heritage corners, and galleries across several void decks, walkways and schools by 2020. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND LUI

    By Melody Zaccheus

    SINGAPORE - Queenstown, the country's first satellite estate, will get a network of six neighbourhood heritage corners, and galleries across several void decks, walkways and schools by 2020.

    These galleries will feature themed showcases including photos, artefacts and stories collected from residents.

    Block 145 Mei Ling Street for instance, will be the site of a kampung themed-exhibition, which pays tribute to its early days when it was home to Boh Beh Kang village.

    The village had around 300 Chinese families who lived in two and three-storey attap huts at the foot of Hong Lim hill.

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    Default Coming to Queenstown: A museum, heritage corners and galleries

    By Alice Chia
    POSTED: 13 Aug 2014 10:41


    The Queenstown Citizens' Consultative Committee and civic group My Community developed the "My Queenstown Heritage Blueprint 2020" to celebrate the neighbourhood's history.



    One of the organisers showcasing a heritage marker along the Queenstown Heritage Trail. Guest-of-honour Minister of Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing looks on. (Photo: Alice Chia)



    Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing (4th right) and special guests at the launch of the heritage markers in Queenstown. (Photo: Alice Chia)



    Another stop along the Queenstown Heritage Trail - a Stirling Road HDB block, which was completed in 1960 and is one of the first public housing blocks in Singapore. (Photo: Alice Chia)


    SINGAPORE: A museum, neighbourhood heritage corners and galleries are some initiatives Queenstown residents can expect, as part of upcoming plans to celebrate the history of their estate.

    This is according to the "My Queenstown Heritage Blueprint 2020", which was developed by civic group, My Community, and Queenstown Citizens' Consultative Committee (CCC). A media tour of the initiatives was organised on Wednesday (Aug 13).

    One of the initiatives is a museum that will serve as a repository of shared memories and will house exhibits such as music scores of 1960s band, The Quests, which was started in Queenstown Secondary Technical School. A network of galleries, neighbourhood heritage corners and markers will also be installed in various parts of the estate by 2020, according to the blueprint.

    In addition, following the success of the inaugural Queenstown Festival in 2013, the festival will take place biannually. It will feature exhibitions, concerts and performances inspired by Queenstown or performed by residents.

    By the end of the year, residents can also look forward to trail markers and a revised mobile application for "My Queenstown Heritage Trail".

    Said Dr Chia Shi-Lu, Member of Parliament for Tanjong Pagar GRC, said: "Although Queenstown is small in size, our stories are big in heart and soul, and certainly speak volumes of life in the 1960s and 1970s."

    The blueprint also complements upcoming development projects in Margaret Drive and Dawson.

    In June, the authorities announced that 31 blocks at Tanglin Halt Road and Commonwealth Drive will be redeveloped under the Selective En Bloc Redevelopment Scheme. Residents from these blocks will be rehoused in new flats at Margaret Drive, Dawson Road and Strathmore Avenue, which will be ready by 2020.

    Academics, policymakers and residents will also have a platform to discuss heritage and development issues in the "My Queenstown Symposium" series.

    "Queenstown is the first satellite estate in Singapore and it contains memories of many Singaporeans. While we look forward to the proposed rejuvenation of the estate, we will also work hard to retain and incorporate our history and heritage into the new developments so that Queenstown will always be our home - with hope and with a heart," Dr Chia said.


    - CNA/kk

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    Default Sentosa to get major facelift complete with themed zones

    h=2]5-year makeover will group activities and attractions according to themes
    [/h]


    Published on Aug 15, 2014 6:0AM




    Men on the MegaZip in Sentosa on Oct 28, 2012. Sentosa will be given a makeover in the next five years in a bid to draw more locals and tourists to the island. -- ST PHOTO: TED CHEN


    By Janice Tai

    Sentosa will be given a makeover in the next five years in a bid to draw more locals and tourists to the island.

    Attractions and activities for visitors will be grouped according to themes and given designated areas within Sentosa.

    For example, the Palawan Beach area will be for family activities with its upcoming Family Entertainment Centre, while Siloso Beach will offer lively beach bars and adrenaline-pumping rides for the adventurous and trendy. Imbiah Lookout will give nature and heritage lovers the greenery and serenity they seek.

    Sentosa Development Corp (SDC), which manages the island, is calling for developers to indicate their interest in developing the island on the Government's online purchasing portal, GeBIZ, in an exercise that ends today.

    According to SDC's project brief, six existing sites, which make up a third of the island's land area, have been earmarked for transformation - the North-South Link Precinct, Fort Siloso and Siloso Point, Siloso Beach, Palawan Beach, Tanjong Beach and Imbiah Lookout.

    SDC also asked developers to submit ideas on how space on the 500ha island can be better used and how people can get from one area to another more easily.

    "We would like to gain insights into innovative ways of enhancing infrastructure, landscape and lighting, as well as strategies for more efficient land use," said Mr Benjamin Chia, divisional director of property at SDC.

    Experts say having themed zones, each with its own distinct identity, will be crucial as the island, which already has 33 attractions and nearly 200 food and retail outlets, is getting more crowded. "It will help distribute the crowd according to age group, and allow better land and infrastructure planning, such as having more child-friendly facilities in areas that are meant for families," said Dr Michael Chiam, senior lecturer in tourism at Ngee Ann Polytechnic.

    The five-year plan will be executed in three phases, starting with the North-South Link Precinct and ending with Imbiah Lookout.

    Once work on the North-South Link Precinct is done, visitors should be able to walk easily from the North-South boulevard to the beaches and other zones.

    The Fort Siloso and Siloso Point Precinct, which houses the country's coastal defence installation, will be a draw for history buffs. Beach lovers who want to see more of nature in a tranquil setting can head to Tanjong Beach.

    The last time the island received a makeover was in 2006, when a new walkway and a children's splashing zone were added to Palawan Beach. That mini rejuvenation alone came with an $11 million bill.

    SDC said it is unable to estimate the budget for this project as the developers have yet to be appointed.

    Visitorship to the island has jumped since Resorts World Sentosa opened in 2010, rising from 6.1 million in 2008 to 20.5 million last year. Figures could go higher with the opening of long-awaited attractions such as wax museum Madame Tussauds this year and Singapore's first bungee jump facility next year.

    "These changes are all exciting and good, but I hope the crowds will be better managed as there is always a bottleneck at the tram stations," said social service executive Cheryl Ong, 27, who goes to Sentosa for beach volleyball every week.
    Last edited by Loh; 08-14-2014 at 10:56 PM.

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