Ruling party PAP government has diverted S$900 million taxes that could have went into water price subsidies to spend on a new army facility the size of Bishan town. According to the Ministry of Defence, the S$900 million military facility known as “Singapore Armed Forces Training Institute (Safti) City “, will be constructed over 10 years and is located at the north-west region in Singapore.
The S$900 million splurging on the Singapore army coincides with the 30% increase in water taxes, that could generate about S$90 million a year more in income for the government. From July 1, Singaporeans and businesses will have to pay more water prices, with the poor the hardest-hit by inflation of food prices by heartland hawker food stalls. The 30% increase came despite having the Public Utilities Board posting hundreds of millions of profits each year, and up to S$1 billion net profit in 8 years.
Singapore’s falling birth rate saw about a 3% reduction in annual National Service conscript recruitment each year. South East Asia is also a lot more peaceful, with Malaysia and Indonesia having leadership who are economic-centric as compared to the earlier leaders who were hawkish on Singapore’s independence. However, more money has been spent on the Singapore army, which is believed to be part of the anti-China approach since Singapore is also a United States military outpost.
The Singapore government is technically a military junta, with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong himself a brigadier general while other Ministers being former uniformed officers. Nepotism and corruption remains Singapore’s stumbling progress to democracy from an authoritarian fascist state.