An open letter to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Budget 2018 has been trending on social media. It is unknown who originally wrote and circulated the letter but the letter has been making its rounds on Facebook and WhatsApp from yesterday.
The letter lists six criticisms of the budget that was unveiled by Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat on Monday. Besides questioning the mixed messages the Government appears to be giving, with the GST hike and the SG Bonus, the letter criticises the Government’s spending on defence and education.
It also calls on the head of government to further tax the wealthy instead of pushing the financial burden to average Singaporeans.
Read the letter in full here:
Dear Prime Minister.
Your budget makes no sense at all. I am not like one of these many lemmings on here that praise it and don’t know what its about. Can you care to explain the following:
1) If you have a budget surplus of almost $10 billion from last year, why are u still raising the GST?
2) Isn’t giving u $300 on one hand (bribing one with one’s own money) and taking it away on the other hand with a GST increase, rather meaningless?
3) Why are we spending billions $ on infrastructure like rail and roads when we have a zero population growth and almost negative birthrate? Who are we building these infrastructure for? To accommodate your target of 6.9 million population? So, we are spending Singaporean taxpayer money on infrastructure for foreigners?
4) Why is our defence budget 40% larger then our healthcare budget, more then $4 billion more. To buy weapons and equipment to fight who? Name our enemy, Mr. Prime Minister. With an aging population, healthcare should far surpass the defence budget, not the other way round
5) Increasing the education budget by giving more edusave bursaries to our student is like giving crumbs to us. Your govt is giving full scholarships to foreign students, why can’t we get that deal instead?
6) If u need more money, instead of taxing the poor with a GST increase, why don’t u raise the tax rate for the high earners (those earning over $1 million a year). I am sure there are thousands of such people, including all your Cabinet Ministers and many MPs. If you tax them more, u surely can avoid the GST.