PM Lee Hsien Loong at the Merdeka Generation Appreciation Ceremony and Roadshow

PM Lee Hsien Loong | 2 June 2019

Speech delivered by PM Lee Hsien Loong at the Merdeka Generation Appreciation Ceremony and Roadshow at ITE College Central on 2 June 2019.

 

 

Good morning everybody, residents of Ang Mo Kio and Sengkang West and grassroots leaders. Very happy to see so many Merdeka Generation citizens here this morning, nearly everybody is Merdeka Generation. All of you, the band, the emcee, and also me. It is a day for the Merdeka Generation and let me say something first in Malay.

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Malay Speech

Saudari-saudari sekalian, tahun lalu, Pemerintah mengumumkan bahawa kami akan menyediakan Pakej Generasi Merdeka atau MGP sebagai tanda penghargaan negara terhadap sumbangan anda kepada Singapura.

Anggota Generasi Merdeka membesar semasa tahun-tahun awal kemerdekaan. Ramai antara anda yang mula bekerja pada usia muda untuk menyara hidup keluarga. Anda bekerja dalam bidang-bidang yang penting untuk ekonomi kita. Ramai yang terpaksa menjalani hidup susah dan perlu banyak berkorban.

Tetapi, berkat usaha gigih anda, Singapura berkembang makmur dan bersatu padu dan kita telah capai banyak kemajuan hingga ke hari ini.

Pakej MGP hanyalah satu tanda penghargaan yang kecil untuk bantu anda dalam kos perubatan dan sara hidup anda.

Saya gembira kerana para penduduk Ang Mo Kio yang hadir hari ini adalah yang pertama untuk terima kad MG mereka. Bagi yang lain, jangan bimbang. Anda akan terima kad MG anda, bulan depan.

Sekarang izinkan saya untuk teruskan ucapan dalam bahasa Mandarin.

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Chinese Speech

各位立国一代的同胞们,很高兴能够与这么多位宏茂桥和盛港西的立国一代聚在一起。我和你们一样,也属于立国一代。我们很快就会收到立国一代的卡了。

我们这一代人在50和60年代的动荡时期成长,看到父母和先辈的辛劳。他们在艰难的环境中,抚养我们长大。那时,国家经济前景不明朗,我们年纪轻轻就投入劳动队伍,默默为家庭和国家付出和牺牲。现在,看到新加坡稳定繁荣,子孙后代有自己的成就,生活环境也比我们以前舒适多了,我们都感到欣慰和自豪。

立国一代的国人当中,有很多是苦尽甘来,慢慢熬出头的。虽然小时候家境贫困,但是他们不怕困难,为了家人做出牺牲、努力耕耘,生活才富裕起来。

例如50年代出生的黄亚兰女士,从小生长在甘榜。当时,她家里穷,要三餐温饱很不容易。她记得小时候,常常只吃白粥配酱油。为了帮补家用,黄女士很早就停学,出来打工。在那个年代,很多女生都像黄女士一样,为了养家,牺牲了学业。 她刻苦耐劳,努力拼搏,后来从事餐饮业的工作,从底层做起,直到升职成为餐厅经理。

现在黄女士已经退休了,快乐地过着活跃的乐龄生活。她在杨厝港的居民委员会很活跃,参加很多活动。去年,我很高兴在宏茂桥综合诊所在开幕仪式上,看到她的表演才华。

立国一代配套是政府对立国一代表达的一点心意,感谢立国一代和新加坡一起成长,经历独立年代的斗争和动荡,默默牺牲和付出,协助打造我们今天的家园。这一路走来不容易。

立国一代卡可以帮忙抵消一些医药费,减轻开销。 这张卡也方便您参加活动和享有优惠。比如:宏茂桥民众联络所和附近的触爱社会服务中心提供的活跃乐龄活动。大家也可以到全国乐龄学苑学书法、画画或音乐,或者上辅导课、电脑课或者企业管理课程。还有,别忘了使用您的技能创前程培训补助!

我们希望通过这些措施和活动平台,鼓励大家保持身心健康活跃,继续以自己的方式回馈国家社会。

虽然我们已经年过花甲,属于年长人士了,不过我相信我们立国一代还是能以不同的方式,为家人的幸福、国家的发展,做出贡献。谢谢大家!

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English Speech

Friends and fellow Merdeka Generation members, I am very happy to be here this morning to pay tribute to the Merdeka Generation.

Our Generation lived the Singapore story, and indeed wrote a large part of it. We grew up in the early years of independence. We travelled with Singapore from third world to first. We helped build this nation and make Singapore a successful little red dot.

Our path was not always straight and level – we weathered several economic crises, and workers experienced dislocation and uncertainty as we transformed the economy and upgraded the workforce.

For example, in the 1970s, we had the oil crises. Our economy suffered, and many were retrenched.

One of them was Mr Jamil bin Mohamed Yusoff, who was an assistant machine operator at Times Printer. Mr Jamil buckled down and persevered. He found an administrative job at a shipyard company, then later worked at General Motors and other companies before retiring in 2015. His resilient and never say die attitude is emblematic of his generation.

Now, Mr Jamil is enjoying his well-earned retirement taking care of three grandchildren. He also spends time with friends and neighbours in his Hougang block, where he has lived for 30 years. He helps with the day-to-day management of the wellness centre, and sometimes brings his grandchildren along to mingle with the older folks. The old people are very happy, the young ones I hope are also happy to be sayanged.

I hope that the Merdeka Generation Package can give Mr Jamil and fellow MGs even more peace of mind to enjoy retirement. All MGs will receive a Merdeka Generation welcome folder and card by the end of July.

From July, the first MediSave top-up will be credited to your MediSave accounts, and MGs can start redeeming a $100 top-up to their PAssion Silver Cards. And don’t forget you can also get kopi and teh for just 50 cents at NTUC Foodfare and Kopitiam every Wednesday, courtesy of NTUC! Then from November, you can show this card at any CHAS GP clinic, polyclinic or public hospital to receive outpatient medical and dental subsidies.

I am very happy that 300 of our AMK MG residents are here today to receive their MG welcome folders and cards in person. This is the first of several MG appreciation events that the Government is organising nationwide.

The MGP Taskforce, led by SMS Amy Khor and SMS Sim Ann, are also working hard to reach out to the MGs to inform everyone about the MGP. I would like to acknowledge and thank the team, and all the Silver Generation Ambassadors for their creativity and hard work.

Thank you, and I look forward to meeting all of you later.

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