After listening to Mah Bow Tan’s plan to build more rental flats for the less well off citizens, I am truly inspired. The govt is now actively tackling the problem of the poorer Singaporeans and to help them. More empty flats will be converted to 1 rm and 2 rm rental flats to solve the problems of housing for the poor. And the rentals will definitely be affordable, calculated with computer precision to fit the income of the poor Singaporeans. This is to prevent the more well off Singaporeans from taking advantage of the system and deprived the more needy Singaporeans of rental flats.
So what will happen is that the household income of the family will be carefully scrutinized not only on eligibility but also to determine how much each family will pay for the rental of the flat. A family with a higher income will have to pay more than a family with a lower income. This kind of micro management to ensure that the poor cannot abuse or cheat the system is one of its kind in the world. It is an obsession to make sure that the poor are managed to every detail of the little money they have. Put them under the microscope. And once they earn a little more, they should be made to pay a little more. This is absolutely fair and righteous. This is equitability at its best. Means testing was not mentioned, but means testing will have to be done to assess affordability.
This principle of paying according to income or affordability is the most ingenious part of the solution. It convinces me that means testing is important and relevant in the
And for this scheme to be effective and implemented across the board, all Singaporeans must be means tested. Testing only the poorer Singaporeans is discrimination by wealth and is disgusting. Also, since all govt services and fees are to be paid according to affordability, it is necessary to means test the more affluent Singaporeans to ensure that they pay more for the same govt and public services. As an example, the price of a 5 rm flat should vary according to the family income of the buyer. Or hospital ward charges shall be computed according to the patient’s family income and applicable to A, B and C wards. School and university tuition fees shall be also payable according to the family’s income. The higher the family income, the higher should be the fees. It is the fairest and gracious formula for the better off citizens to cross subsidise for their poorer counterparts.
With such an equitable scheme where those who can afford more pay more and those who can afford less pay less, the govt will be seen as fair and progressive instead of being mean and petty if means testing is only applicable for the poor. I will definitely support such a great scheme.