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  Lives Notes

The Live Notes are the sources and references used in the exhibition catalogue. For readers who have a copy of the catalogue, please click on the following:

Section 1
Looking Back - Political Milestones Leading to the Birth of the Republic

Section 2
Making Friends and Defending Our Sovereignty

Section 3
The Story of an Economic Miracle

Section 4
Caring for the Nation

Section 5
Living Together in Harmony


 

 

Section 4 Caring for the Nation


Page 112, Para 1: Quote extracted from speech by the First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence, at the opening of "Clean and Green Week" at the Esplanade Park, 4 November 1990.


Health Matters

Page 113, para 2, line 2: Singapore Year Book 1965, p. 288

Page 113, para 2, line 7: Yearbook of Statistics Singapore 1967, by Chief Statistician, Department of Statistics Singapore, p. 171

Page 114, para 1, line 1: Parliamentary Debates Official Report, Second Parliament First Session, Vol. 30, Sitting No. 7. "Bills." Prohibition on Advertisements Relating to Smoking Bill. 30 December 1970.

Page 114, para 2, line 1: Parliamentary Debates Official Report, Second Parliament First Session, Vol. 30, Sitting No. 2. "Bills." Prohibition on Smoking in Certain Places Bill. 21 May 1970.

Page 114, para 3: Quote extracted from speech by Acting Minister for Health, Jek Yuen Thong, when moving the second reading of the Prohibition on Smoking in Certain Places Bill, 21 May 1970.

Page 116, para 1, line 1: Singapore Year Book 1965, p. 299

Page 116, para 1, line 6: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1970-71, p.1.


Environmental Matters

Page 117, para 2, line 1: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1970-71, p.2.

Page 117, para 2, line 5:

Lee Ek Tieng, who was appointed Head of the Anti-Pollution Unit (APU) in 1960, explained how the APU was formed under the Prime Minister’s Office, in his oral history interview, Accession number 002832, reel 2:

"Because of the report by Graham Perry, the Prime Minister (then Lee Kuan Yew) was very concerned about industrialisation. He read about problems with air pollution and so on. That's why he decided to form the Anti-Pollution Unit. Instead of calling Air-Pollution Unit, Anti-Pollution Unit, the whole idea was not just water pollution, because we already got the solid waste, the garbage removal system. Incidentally, when I was in Health, my major job was to mechanise it, to remove garbage from every house, for HDB and everything. That is solid waste. The liquid waste was the Sewerage Department job. The third one was air pollution… We got an Australian professor by the name of Vernon Strauss, he came and he did a lot of work for us. We went down with him to practically every factory in Jurong then. In Jurong those days, there were small little factories, to study. And because of his experience, he knew exactly what sort of waste they would discharge in respect of air pollution. In those days we didn't have laws, so we had to depend on Labour Ministry, Pang Buck Noi's department…. They deal with all these boilers and so on, the Safety Department. We had to use their laws. A lot of factories emitting black smoke, like sawmills. Jurong used to have a lot of sawmills, boilers used to belch out black smoke so on. These are visual pollution, but we had no powers, so we had to get their help.”

Page 117, para 2, line 12: Singapore Year Book 1973, p.195.

Page 117, para 3, line 1: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1970-71, p. 2.

Page 117, para 4, line 6: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1968, p. 25.

Page 117, para 4, line 11: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1968, p. 23.

Page 117, para 4, line 11:

Dr Victor Mathuraretnam Samuel Thevathasan, a Senior Health Officer in the Public Health Division from 1962-73, recalled the various environmental health campaigns that were organised since Independence, in his oral history interview, Accession number 002171, reel 4:

“In the mid-sixties great emphasis was placed on campaigns, that is to say health education on different subjects. This was strongly supported and encouraged by Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew. So the [Public Health Division] had to be organised to carry out various campaigns. The first campaign was “Keep Singapore Clean”. This was organised by the Public Health Division and at that time Prime Minister appointed Mr Tan Teck Khim who was in the police department to come and head this project.... So, in organising it we first had to see what the department was required to do, what laws had to be changed and various other matters. These having been done then the public were subjected to an intensive health education campaign through the papers, through TV, through radio etc....

"The message was that you should keep Singapore clean, you don’t throw your rubbish anywhere. It should be put in the proper place, for example, in dustbins. And in order to implement this, the department had to provide dustbins at various places. And later the people were told to use them and if they were not used and they were still throwing rubbish indiscriminately then action would be taken by law to stop them from doing so.

"To implement this campaign after one month of health education campaign the Public Health Inspectors in the Environmental Health Division were ordered to patrol various areas to see if anyone was throwing litter indiscriminately. Anyone caught was immediately given a ticket and had to go to court. Although the maximum fine was 500 dollars, in the beginning anyone caught throwing litter was fined about 50 dollars. This was to make an impression on the public that this was a serious matter and they would be punished for it.

"There were no exceptions made when anyone was caught throwing litter. They were just taken to court and fined. This proved very salutary and was quite effective after a while. So that was the main project in the beginning. This was followed in the next year by a similar campaign “Keep Singapore Clean and Green”. Wherever possible the cleanliness was maintained and the Parks and Trees Department was very helpful.... when they found any place that needed looking after and growing trees and bushes they did it. So the overall effect was Singapore became clean and green.

Page 117, para 4, line 12: Ministry of Health Annual Report 1970-71, p. 2.

Page 118, Para 1: Quote extracted from speech by Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew at the launch of the Keep Singapore Clean campaign, 1 Oct 1968.

Page 119, Bottom left caption, line 1: Ministry of the Environment Annual report 1972, p. 16.

Page 119, Bottom left caption, line 3: Ministry of the Environment Annual Report 1972-1975.

Page 119, Bottom right caption, line 1: Ministry of the Environment Annual Report 1974, p. 17.

Page 120, caption 1:

In his oral history interview (Accession number 002832, reel 4), Lee Ek Tieng explained how a major part of cleaning up the Singapore River was to resite the street hawkers who discharged their waste into the river:

"Singapore River main source, apart from the upper estuary, mainly from Chinatown - Smith Street, Sago Street, they were all street hawkers plying their ware and slaughtering chickens, you name it they do it, including those days even snakes, wild animals and so on. Everything went down, from the blood, feathers and everything, notwithstanding garbage removal and so on. So, the cleaning up of Singapore River was essentially a project not just of garbage removal, you can only remove garbage from households, from hawkers and so on. But you are dealing essentially with water pollution. They are water-borne waste, actually.”

Page 121, Top caption, line 2: Statement by Minister for Health, Mr Yong Nyuk Lin, at the press conference held at the administrative headquarters of the hawkers department on 9 February 1966.

Page 123, para 2: Quote extracted from Lee Kuan Yew, From Third World to First: The Singapore Story 1965 - 2000 Memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew (Singapore: Times Editions, 2000), p. 201.

Page 124, para 2: Quote extracted from Lee Kuan Yew, From Third World to First: The Singapore Story 1965 - 2000 Memoirs of Lee Kuan Yew (Singapore: Times Editions, 2000), pp. 199-205.

Page 125, para 1, line 1: Ministry of National Development, "Milestones of Singapore's Development - Development of the Garden City." 12 September 1994.

Page 125, para 1, line 4: Parliamentary Debates Annual Report, Second Parliament First Session, Vol. 27, Sitting No. 1. "Memorandum Presented to Parliament as an Addendum to the Address by the President." Ministry of National Development, 6 May 1968.

Page 125, para 1, line 6: Public Works Department Annual Report 1973, p. 33.

Page 125, para 2, line 1: Parliamentary Debates Annual Report, Second Parliament First Session, Vol. 27, Sitting No. 1. "Bills." Trees and Plants (Preservation and Improvement of Amenities) Bill. 30 December 1970.

Page 126, para 2, line 3: Parliamentary Debates Annual Report, Second Parliament Second Session, Vol. 31, Sitting No. 14. "Budget." Estimates of Expenditure for Financial Year 1st April 1972 to 31st March 1973. 22 March 1972.

Page 126, para 3: Quote extracted from speech by First Deputy Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong at the launch of the "Clean and Green Week…Green for Life", 1990.

Page 126, para 4, line 1: For more details on the Plant-A-Tree Programme, please visit http://www.gardencityfund.org/pat/index.htm


Box Story: Family Planning

Page 129, para 2, line 2:

Former Head of Civil Service, Dr Andrew Chew Guan Khuan, explained how reproduction rates became a national issue with implications on the economy and defence, in his oral history interview, Accession Number 1620, reel 16, conducted in 1995:

"When you are a politician, you look at it from a macro point of view and the macro point of view is that the less marriages you have, the less number of new Singaporeans that would be born each year. And singles may carry with it social problems in later life, and when you look at it overall, we say, why don't we make sure we don't fall into the same trap. Well that's what you find the world over, where the country is very developed... as couples begin to earn more, not all of them necessarily feel that having children is something they want. The SDU [Social Development Unit] then subsequently says, 'Look, we've managed to get them together, we've got them married. The next point is, do they have families?' That's the other thing.

"Of course, another prong would be to try and say look, we have previously been so active in trying to say, 'Two is enough.' I remember slogans you know, our Family Planning Population Board which is now an extinct Board, used to promote, 'Girl or boy, two is enough.' Because amongst the Chinese particularly, they say you must have a boy, you know. But it was something we pushed. And actually, what happened was that over the years as we went on, we found that the nett reproduction rate, which is a measure of a women reproducing herself, is 1.7. And that was bad. In other words, the message there is that the female is not reproducing herself. That means negative growth, zero growth and [the] population disappears. So, it is not good.

"Of course, times have changed and today, the policy is, if you can afford, have three or even more. So maybe that's why some of the Ministers have got four children. But I suppose family sizes have increased of late and that's good. But we still need to in-migrate anything from 15,000 to 20,000 per year actually if you want to keep on adding to the labour pool the way our economic growth is being planned. So one can say that the decision for an SDU may be seen as only a very narrow decision, but it part of a very big decision. In fact, the final big decision is, the manpower needs for the country both for economic growth and even for defence purposes. So whatever you do of course, the linkages are there and it's a matter of how you see the linkages [are] being established, worked out, so that it works towards a final purpose. I remember in the study of neurology, a great neurologist refers to it as a 'final common pathway' where everything comes down to a point and that's what you want. So that's what it is."

Page 127, para 2: Quote extracted from A History of Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Singapore (2003), p. 372.

Page 128, para 1 line 1: Based on figures from the Family Planning and Population Board Annual Report 1965, p.5.

Page 128, para 2: Quote extracted from Paulin Koh, "History of Midwifery and O&G Nursing in Singapore" in The History of Obstetrics & Gynaecology in Singapore, ed. Tan Kok Hian and Tay Eng Hseon (Singapore: ARMOUR Publishing Pte Ltd, 2003), p. 373.

Page 129, para 1, line 2: Quote extracted from Dr Kelvin Tan Kok Hian, "The World’s Largest Maternity Hospital – How It All Began” in The History of Obstetrics & Gynaecology in Singapore, ed. Tan Kok Hian and Tay Eng Hseon (Singapore: ARMOUR Publishing Pte Ltd, 2003), pp. 48-50.

Page 129, para 2, line 1: Information based on speech by Mr Chua Sian Chin, Minister for Health, at the Conference on Regional Cooperation in Population and Family Planning on Thursday, 22 October 1970 at Kuala Lumpur. Source: Ministry of Culture.

Page 129, para 2, line 7: Information based on speech by Mr Yong Nyuk Lin, Minister for Health, at the official opening of the Working Group on Communication Aspects of Family Planning sponsored by ECAFE at the Conference Hall on Tuesday, 5 September 1967 at 10 am. Source: Ministry of Culture.

Page 129, para 3, line 1: Ibid.

Page 129, para 3, line 5: Information based on speech by Mr Chua Sian Chin, Minister for Health, at the Opening Ceremony of the Second Official Meeting of the Inter-Governmental Coordinating Committee, Southeast Asian Regional Cooperation in Family and Population Planning at the Hotel Equatorial on Monday, 21 February 1972 at 9 am. Source: Ministry of Culture.

Page 129, para 3, line 7: Singapore Family Planning & Population Board, Fifteenth Annual Report, 1980, p. 2.

Page 129, para 3, line 11: Parliamentary Debates Official Report, Second Session of the Sixth Parliament, Vol. 48, Sitting No. 7, “Oral Answers to Questions”, Declining Population Growth (Corrective Measures), 22 September 1986.


 
 

 

  Last Updated on 31 March 2009  

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