SINGAPORE — Red Dot United’s secretary-general Ravi Philemon has made a heartfelt plea to Senior Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam to provide much-needed assistance to a vulnerable elderly woman currently facing ‘distressing living conditions’ due to hoarding.
Philemon hopes that the senior minister would have a lasting impact on her life before his resignation as a Jurong GRC member of parliament. Minister Tharman announced in June that he would retire from politics and relinquish all his government positions on July 7, as he intends to contest in the upcoming presidential election.
In his email to Minister Tharman, the Red Dot United leader said, “I implore you to take this urgent matter into consideration and use your remaining time as an MP to provide assistance to this elderly woman, ensuring she can live her life with the dignity and support she deserves. Your steadfast commitment to the well-being of the residents in Jurong GRC would undoubtedly leave a lasting impact and serve as a testament to your dedication as a public servant.”
During their community outreach in the Taman Jurong ward, Red Dot United stumbled upon the undesirable living conditions of elderly women. Other residents that the party spoke to voiced their concerns about their neighbor’s safety and well-being.
“Residents at Block 155 Yung Loh Road in Taman Jurong have expressed deep concern for their neighbor, an elderly woman in her late 70s or early 80s. Unfortunately, her mental well-being has taken a turn for the worse since her husband was admitted to the hospital for a long-term illness. Compounding her distress, she has become a hoarder, resulting in dire living conditions,” shared Philemon.
Philemon added that the elderly woman works as a cleaner at a nearby coffee shop. When she returns home late at night, she faces difficulty entering her four-room HDB flat because of the accumulated rubbish blocking the entrance. This situation has raised concerns among her neighbors, who have reported it to the town council. However, as of now, no action has been taken to address the issue.
In the email to Minister Tharman, Philemon mentioned that the hoarding poses a serious fire hazard and denies the elderly woman the basic dignity she deserves. The Red Dot United secretary-general felt that SM Tharman’s influence and advocacy could make a profound difference in the elderly woman’s life.
Philemon, who shared his email with SM Tharman on Facebook, emphasized the urgency of the matter and added, “Time is of the essence, as we await Mr. Tharman’s response and actions. The well-being and safety of this elderly woman is at stake, and the community looks to their MP for support during this challenging time.”
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