Minister K. Shanmugam is Minister for Law and Minister for Home Affairs. He is known to speak his mind frankly, honestly, and take clear positions on issues affecting Singaporeans.
Since taking office as Minister for Law in 2008, Mr Shanmugam has overseen significant legal reforms in various areas. These include our criminal laws, family laws, legal aid and access to justice, bankruptcy and insolvency regimes, intellectual property laws, dispute resolution and civil procedure, and legal profession and industry.
In particular, as Minister for Law, he has changed the laws in many ways to better protect vulnerable people such as children, persons with disabilities and victims of sexual violence or harassment.
Most recently: the Penal Code and Protection From Harassment Act were changed to better protect vulnerable victims. How did this come about? Mr Shanmugam visited an NGO that helps victims of abuse. They told him the story of “Sally”. She had been beaten up badly by her boyfriend. The boyfriend was charged in court and sent to jail. But Sally could have been better protected if she had rights that married women had. Mr Shanmugam promised the NGO that the law will be changed. 9 months later, the law was changed. Now it is in force.
As the Minister for Home Affairs, he has taken a firm stand against people trying to divide Singapore along racial and religious lines. Under his watch, Singapore launched the SGSecure movement, Emergency Response Teams and other anti-terrorist capabilities. The Ministry has integrated cutting-edge technology into the operations of the Home Team, including facial recognition, body cameras, detection of chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive threats and so on. It also formed an agency dedicated to science and technology in the Home Team. With such efforts, Singapore continues to be one of the safest places in the world.
Mr Shanmugam has taken care of Chong Pang for 32 years. He helped develop Chong Pang into a vibrant town centre. He has also led the Nee Soon team to improve the living environment in Nee Soon.