More than half of Singaporeans polled in survey want to emigrate! What will our Government do?

Finally! An uncensored, unmanipulated survey that reflects Singaporean’s sentiments and feelings about the current state of affairs in Singapore. A Mindshare survey carried out early this year found that  a staggering 56 per cent of the 2,000-odd Singaporeans polled agreed or strongly agreed that, “given a choice, I would like to migrate”.

The key findings give some idea of why so many people want to leave the country and emigrate:
– 62% of those polled believe that our political leaders are paid too much these days.
– 65% think they will not be able to retire comfortably in Singapore.
– 72% think they cannot afford to get sick these days due to high medical costs.
– 73% think that public housing prices are getting out of hand.
– 75% think they should not be spending their entire working life paying off housing loans.
– 69% believe there are too many foreign workers taking up job opportunities in our society today.
– And 73% believe that Singaporeans should be granted priority in employment.

Those of us who have been monitoring the ground closely would not be too surprised by the dismal findings of this survey.

What is refreshing is that it is the first such survey in many years to give the unvarnished truth unlike the usual surveys commissioned by the Government and the mainstream media which usually produce whitewashed findings or diluted interpretations that give a brighter than actual picture of Singaporeans’ sentiments.

It is interesting to note that this Mindshare survey has not been reported by the nation’s main newspaper with the biggest circulation – The Straits Times (for obvious reasons). But it was reported over this weekend by The Business Times and Omy.sg and The New Paper – all of which have limited readership.

The validity of this survey is of course open to questioning since the  media reports did not shed light on the sampling and methodology. But then again, the same applies to many national surveys done by official bodies where they only release the findings. Nonetheless, we can still use this Mindshare survey as a flashpoint to ask pertinent questions.

One wonders what our Prime Minister and ministers think of these findings? Will they react in a dismissive mode and view those surveyed as being “ungrateful” and “daft” yet again?  Or will they find it in their conscience to reflect and look seriously into these red-flagged concerns?

For many years, the PAP government has been basking in a bubble of self-praise and international accolades for having developed Singapore into a highly progressive modern country.  But how have they fared in building a real nation if more than half of its citizens really want to leave this country?

I seriously think that all our government leaders should be measured not only by GDP-related achievements but also by Gross National Happiness  (GHN) measurements.  If a GHN index were included in their KPI, I reckon they would score a very low RED mark for having created mass unhappiness among its born and bred citizens (yes I emphasise the word born-and-bred citizens and not new citizens or PRs whom this govt loves to please). With GNH as part of their performance measurement, our country’s leaders will be reminded of their priorities i.e. the People are as important if not much more so than the economy.

Our government has done well indeed on the economic front and in building a country with an abundance of modern infrastructure and amenities.  Now if only they can do as well in caring for the people, in nurturing the people and in building a nation of happy Singaporeans. It is this, ultimately,  that should be the real measure of any government’s success.

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7 Responses to More than half of Singaporeans polled in survey want to emigrate! What will our Government do?

  1. ape@kinjioleaf says:

    Any idea how is this survey carried out? How were the questions put forth? What is the mark up of the survey participants?

    Although the results resonate with my own thoughts but again, I like to be a bit more critical about it.

    If the questions goes along the lines that ‘if given a choice, would you migrate?’ I’m not surprised many will say yes. Naturally, following that, participants will go on to answer to ‘why’. Did the survey conclude with these questions, that is ‘which country will be your choice? And do you think that country has what you ask for?’

  2. I don’t have the answers as the newspaper reports only focused on the findings and not the methodology. But yes the survey said that those polled wanted to migrate to Malaysia, Australia, UK, US, Canada and New Zealand in that order of ranking.

  3. allen says:

    I emigrated in 1974 as a result of fear of persecution by a very corrupt Police officer..from Orchard Police Station who tried to extort money from me when I was running a very successful business and when I did not bow to that pressure, he made a false report to Inspector Ahmad at Robinson Road. I read the report myself. It was full of lies. I consulted David Marshall. criminal lawyer. His advice was that if brought the case to court, it would be a Pyrric victory and to abandon the idea as you are fighting the Police ..who I realized have some very corrupt people within their ranks. To cut a very long story short …”Alluha Akbar” this corrupt Muslim Gulam some years later was sacked for corruption. This has already been reported in the ST. Gulam lost his Provident Fund. Was I pleased about this ? Yes. However, Thanks to this corrupt Detective Gulam, because I fled Singapore just in case he resorted to planting drugs or Communist or other subversive material in my vehicle or property. God had a plan for me. I now live in a little paradise…just 25 minutes to the city, no environmental pollution, visual pollution
    an acre of property with a stream thru it and no neighbours to be seen And I don’t have to put up with the thought that I am subject to the daily reminder that the Singapore I grew up in and loved from the 40s to the late 60s no longer exists. Man, when I returned from the UK after studies, I was ever SO proud of what Singapore had achieved until Gulam forced me to leave in 1974 and was an unofficial ambassador of Singapore until “unspeakable” things began to
    prevail. For many years, I boasted about how wonderful our education system and results were
    Many Thanks to Britain for that legacy, the end of crime, gangs, triads. A clean city state that my father helped to sweep up as he was in Government service during Clean Up campaigns, good law and order, Accountability, fairness, decency and courtesy to all ….fundamental qualities were
    prevalent. Today, Overt greed and all those qualities that were present in earlier times are absent. The Singapore born hawkers who used to greet you as Uncle or Aunty in your usual food haunts….they are all gone. Now if you don’t speak the language of the PRCs, you don’t get service from these rude overseas creatures and rather than bow down to pressure, I patronize the stalls where the Singlish and other Singapore dialects are spoken. Why should I a Singapore bred and educated person be forced to speak a language of a stall holder who I am giving my business to …in particular in Singapore.
    All said and done, tis a shame that so many LOVELY and once loyal Singaporeans have felt it necessary to abandon the country of their birth because of the troubling politics of the country and of course the shameful greed of those in top positions.
    Rather than disdain or scorn highly valuable and educated Singaporeans who have emigrated for very good and valid reasons, the Government should be proud that its Ex Singapore born citizens are a very visible credit to Singapore in our adopted country. As to why Singaporeans don’t want to return to the land of their birth…..it’s obvious. We are appreciated for what we are and for our contribution in so many different ways in our adopted country. We enjoy living in an open society where we are not persecuted or bankrupted for baring our thoughts on all important matters that concern our lives and future.
    Singaporeans overseas have often been tempted to return home by embassies abroad.. The BIG question everyone is asking is Return to WHAT ?

    • I am sorry to hear about what you went through but am glad you are happy in your adopted country. To put things in perspective lest people reading this thread think that Sngapore is a scary horrid country, it is not. Many of us who live here like many things about it. The only thing wrong is with our OCD autocratic government. The good news is that over these past few years, Many brave Singaporeans are finding their voice and courage to speak up and to push for changes, We are working hard on this and we will pray for a better Singapore. Wish us well.

  4. Pingback: Inequality pretending it is Meritocracy | wikitemasek

  5. amransan says:

    let me share with u what I gone thru in Singapore.

    I Amransan was born in the early 70’s and I used to lived in kampong where I mixed around with every races in Singapore. we have chinese , malay, indian and Eurasian. I treat them all like my own family we play together eat together that was the happiest memories I had in Singapore and I even mixed marriage to a wonderful chinese gal! 🙂

    bad things started happen to me when I was serving National Slavery on the 3rd night of BMT we were abused for 7hrs at night! we were hard slap on the face 3X,knuckle push up a few hundred till our knuckle bleed because we did it on the rough road tile!!! duck walk , scicoss jump and many more imagine from 8pm till 3am plus!!!!! after the abuse all of us went back tour bunk and we just look at each other in silent thinking what had happen in our mind that night all most of us never sleep due to the shock!! I was thinking we were there to serve and protect the country but who going to protect us in there???!! then I promise myself not to sent my future son or sons to serve NS and the only way is to migrate out of singapore!!!

    it get worst in working life I was treated like bangla by my manager cum union and like I got no values! I used to work in one of the big Insurance company as a mailroom staff for 10years. I was scream at , threaten with warning letter. get scolded even it not my fault, empty promises.
    no matter how hard I work and swallow all the unhappiness until the 10th year I cant take it no more I quit without a job!!!!

    for many months I sent a lot of resume and went for interview but no job. then due to desperate no income I called the old folk home 1 block away from my house. the chinese lady answered the phone and was delighted that I was looking for a job there.
    she told me there is a job as a kitchen helper and ask me where I live and I told her I live nearby and she was happy. then she ask me what is my name and I told her she pause for awhile,
    then she told me that her they serve pork I reply he its ok to serve to the old people as long I don’t eat it it alright and what I be doing is a good deed.

    then she pause again then she told me that here they speak in mandarin and I reply her I can speak simple mandarin no problem and I also told her that my wife is a chinese too. then she pause again and she say here we prefer chinese. I reply her politely thank you and put down the phone.

    after afew month I manage to find a job in finance and banking sector and it was the BEST working experience I ever had!!! almost all the dept director are ang moh and the culture there they follow western style and most of the local staff don’t dare to make used of me we respect each other.
    to cut the story short on the 4th year I quit my job. on the last day my CEO secretly organised a farewell party and I was the lowest rank (mailroom staff)!! he gave a speech he said in his 30 years of being CEO he never find a person like me a very hard working and do a lot of thing outside my job scope he said that I am very helpful staff!!! and guess what he want me to give a speech too!!! well I said thank you for the party and I told the this company is the BEST company I ever work and in future I want my children to work in this company :). after the party and he call me to his office and we had a talk he even gave me his personal hp number and told me if I need a referrer the HR person can call him day or night!

    after that I migrated to Australia with my wife. after 4 years now at present we welcome little princess in our family. me and my wife waiting for our Australian citizenship ceremony.
    we been very happy the people at work respect us and we respect them too. even we got friendly neighbours and even the strangers will say and smile and have a small chat 🙂

    what I went thru in Singapore makes me stronger and determent to migrate out of Singapore!
    there a lot of stories but I will save it for my children so that they learn not to discriminate others because of their colour or whatever 🙂

    thank you for reading 🙂

    • Thank you for sharing your personal experiences. I am really sad to hear about the unpleasant experience you had but am glad you did have a good job at the bank and that you have settled down nicely in Australia. I do think though that there is discrimination in every country to some extent and there are good and bad people too. I have met very snotty angmoh expats who look down on Singaporeans for example so not all are nice. Whatever the case, we do have to go on bringing awareness to as many people as possible not to be elitist and not to discriminate. And yes, like you I miss the old days when our society did seem more integrated and happier. I wish you and your family all the best in Oz.

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