Photo of Ng Chee Meng from Straits Times

Singapore’s rail reliability hit a record low, or at least unofficially, as the North-South and East West lines saw 8 breakdowns in two weeks.

Earlier this week during the peak hour around 7pm on Wednesday (July 5),  public transport operator SMRT reported a train fault between Joo Koon and Jurong East lasting over 30 minutes. The actual state of breakdown was however worse than what SMRT reported, as commuters say major delays on the Circle Line, East-West Line’s City Hall and North-South Line’s Bishan interchange. Dishonest under-reporting or misreporting by the government and corporations is not new in the authoritarian dictatorship.

A day later on Thursday (July 6), another 30-minute-long train fault occurred between Woodlands and Jurong East on the North-South Line.

Last Friday (June 30) in the morning between 6.30am and 8.50am, a train fault occurred at Ang Mo Kio station. In the peak hour evening, another fault lasting 40 minutes occurred between Pasir Ris and Paya Lebar interchange.

A similar issue happened a day earlier last Thursday (June 29), another signalling problem occurred at the problematic Woodlands-Jurong East stations. However two separate train faults at Woodlands station and Bishan station were covered up.

On Wednesday (June 28), the biggest train breakdown paralysing commuters on the North-South East-West lines happened, affecting an estimated 2 million passengers island-wide.

According to the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and SMRT, rail reliability is now at its highest as compared to a year ago. Second Transport Minister Ng Chee Meng cherry-picked statistics between January and May of 2017 and declared that rail reliability has improved. With the government-controlled state media, the Singapore transport ministry often issue propaganda-driven fake news including fake surveys to cover up the worsening state of public transport in Singapore. It is understood that the government is trying to falsify statistics and sentiments so they can raise fares to generate more profits for Temasek Holdings, the country’s loss-making sovereign wealth fund company managed by the Prime Minister’s wife.