Minister in charge of Muslims Affairs Masagos Zulkifli yesterday (Aug 29) poured empty praises for the government’s Malay Muslim organisations from the People’s Association, MUIS and Mendaki claiming that they can “solve any future problems”. With no mention to the present problems, Minister Masagos proclaimed that the government had done well in the past:
“We are a community that can solve any problem that we face in future. This strength from coming together puts them in an even better state to lead the community in a very uncertain future. Therefore, M³ is a proposition by the Malay/Muslim community to the community at large that we are a community that can solve any problem that we face in future, because we have done well in the past and we have the strength and the ability to do so.”
The baseless claims by the S$1.1 million-a-year Minister however contradicts with reality and statistic reports. The Malay community in Singapore have in recent years seen higher poverty level as compared to the past. Household statistics segregating by race released in March 2016 revealed that the number of Malay Singaporeans living in rental flats doubled from 4.9% in 2005 to 10.9%, or 14,600, in 2016. As rental units in Singapore is only available to the poor and needy, they are not readily available for any former homeowners.
Although the Singapore government refuse to set a poverty line to avoid embarrassment to the ruling party elites, there are 1.3 million Singaporeans earning income so low they needed medical fees assistance from the government.
Poverty in Singapore has reached an epidemic level in Singapore, with elderly poor begging on the streets or working in demeaning labour jobs being a common sight. The elitist government however benefits from the widespread poverty by offering cash payouts as election carrots. The poor who are desperate for a few hundred dollars of cash payout ended up being thankful to their oppressors, and the vicious poverty cycle repeats.