Singapore has been welcoming foreigners with open arms. The government has been trying hard to convince us that we need these foreigners, never mind the resentment brewing in our hearts.
Recently the government seems to suddenly realized how much of a concern this issue is and since elections are around the corner steps are being taken to assure Singaporeans that their needs are not being overlooked.
Too little too late, in my opinion.
Also foreigners are becoming a thorn in the government’s flesh too.
Consider the following:
- A mother staged a protest for two days at the Education Ministry demanding that her child be transferred to a top primary school.
- Annoyed by “poor taxi service” an unhappy woman commuter complained to the company, which fired the driver.
- A family of five held up a public bus for six hours, insisting on boarding it with a wheelchair (for their grandmother). Passengers were dislodged, police were called and a tedious negotiation ensued. The saga ended only when the bus company agreed to transport the group in a nine-seat Maxi-cab – at its expense. In this case standing their ground did work.
All these were carried out by mainland Chinese who make up the largest – and arguably the most vocal – group of settlers here.
Others come from India, Sri Lanka and places with a tough fight-back environment.
These cases were not the only ones.
In the past five years, more serious and bigger demonstrations have been regularly staged by disgruntled foreigners.
In fact the grounds of the Manpower Ministry were a frequent scene of mass demonstrations by foreigners seeking help to recover wages or seek jobs promised to them.
During the construction of Marina Sands casino resort, foreign workers downed tools in one instance, one of Singapore’s rare strikes.
In another instance, more than 100 Chinese workers marched along a main busy road watched by thousands of startled citizens.
See what 1.25 million foreigners can do to make a government sweat.
Still want them here?