Parliamentary Questions from Louis Ng on 9 & 10 Jan 2017
1. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs
(a) whether he can provide updates on Singapore’s role with regard to ASEAN’s humanitarian response to support Rohingya refugees in Rakhine state; and
(b) whether Singapore will be taking any further measures to help the refugees in light of the unfolding crisis.
Foreign Minister Dr Vivian Balakrishnan replied that Singapore continues to encourage all parties, including the Myanmar government and the international community, to work together to foster a long term-solution to the Rohingya refugee crisis.
Last month, Singaporeans raised more than $350,000 for humanitarian support to affected communities in the Rakhine state, as well as those affected by the earthquake in Aceh.
Dr Balakrishnan also revealed that after an ASEAN foreign ministers’ meeting, the Myanmar government indicated it would grant the necessary humanitarian access and continue to keep Asean informed of developments in the Rakhine state.
2. To ask the Minister for Transport
(a) whether the Ministry can provide an update on site investigation works on the two alignment options as part of Phase 2 of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the Cross Island MRT Line; and
(b) how is the Ministry engaging volunteers from the nature community to monitor and manage the impact on the ground as the rainy season increases the risk of spills into forest streams caused by boring works.
3. To ask the Minister for National Development whether the Ministry will consider raising the current income cap of $1,500 for public rental housing in view of the rising cost of living and the higher income caps of Government subsidies such as the child care/infant care subsidy and ComCare Short-to-Medium Term Assistance.
4. To ask the Minister for Health
(a) what are the reasons for setting the criteria disallowing women below the age of 35 to take part in the three-year clinical trial for Pre-Implantation Genetic Screening (PGS);
(b) whether the Ministry will consider lowering this age limit for women; and
(c) whether the Ministry will consider allowing women below the age of 35 to take part on a case-by-case basis.
5. To ask the Minister for National Development
(a) whether the Ministry will consider requiring all building owners to erect vertical barriers along the handrails of escalators as a safety measure; and
(b) if not, what other safety measures are in place to protect people especially children from injuries or fatal accidents as a result of falling over the handrails.