Friday, September 30, 2016

Keppel Hill Reservoir

National Heritage Board rediscovered Keppel Hill Reservoir not long ago. This reservoir was once used by Tanjong Pagar Dock Company (former PSA).

I was curious and wanted to see it thus go for the exploration trip. Since the place is pretty small and probably void of any features, the trip start at Alexandra Road. Below is the GPS recording.

As usual, I took the trail instead of the bridge at Forest Walk (Southern Ridges). Noticed some artwork near Lock Road. There are wire mess in the shape of butterflies. Here are two of them. Not very pretty and I most probably missed them in the past.

The Antidesma (no common name) is fruiting.

Have you seen a row of caterpillars gnawing on the leaves?

Never get tired of looking at a Lesser Dart butterfly.

Damaged but still elegant Felder's Royal.

The Orchid Tree is just before the Henderson Bridge. Its flower is beautiful even fallen already.

This Borneo Ru is nice but two efforts to take pictures of its fruit failed. Just look at the tag. Can you guess what it says? I only guess its name from the word Gymnostoma and Borneo. There is only one that has this combination.

To reach the trail, I had to open a steel gate at the small park. It is latched but unlocked. Beyond it is uncharted trail. There are maps showing the path but usually it won't be helpful as there is no marking. Luckily the foot paths are still visible and there are bricked step still showing.

It isn't far before I reached the reservoir. The first thing I noticed is a water pump still working. Its probably some one still using the water.

The reservoir looks run down but its brick wall, where I stood,  is still sturdy.

Here the foot path splits. Tried the left one and saw this tree fallen over the stream with narrow bricked wall. Turn back to the other one and find the path disappears after a while. No choice but to craw under the fallen tree. Took a picture after the ordeal.

The path is clear and easy after that. Took a final trail between Keppel Hill Rd and Telok Blangah Rd as indicated in the map. Mission accomplished. The total distance covered is 4 KM.

Here is the WikiLoc Map. No album as Google Photos is very unfriendly. It does not update the photos after uploading. I have yet to update all the tagging and naming so the pictures has not been uploaded yet.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Elected President by Shanmugam

The late Lee Kuan Yew take pains to set up the elected president before he left the PM office. His aim is to have a check on the future government using the reserves.

Today in "Today", Shanmugam says "S'poreans must decide...." What is he implying?  Asking the citizen to repeal what Lee KW has done to protect the country? He was in the parliament when Lee KW proposed and passed the bill.Now after Goh CT handed over to Lee junior he is suggesting otherwise. Since he is a Minister, I belief he is speaking on behalf of the government. I must ask what his intention is. Is he considering the Constitutional Commission report already suggesting to have a separate "appointed body" to have the custodial role.

Raising the financial management threshold, Suggesting minority race President. Suggesting repealing of President power. Is the government going some direction?

Any effort to dilute or impede the President's custodial role is a sign of going against Lee KW's idea of protecting the country.

Monday, September 05, 2016

Elected President Singapore

There are ample talks about EP. While the panel's article has not been published, PM and others already gone online about it. There are a few points which I think it may not be fair.

1. Group representation. One term is 6 years. Assuming each person takes one year. There should be 6 person. Are they going to be 3 Chinese, 1 Malay, 1 Indian and 1 other minority? In any configuration, there will be a majority. In any event, will the other 5 influence the presiding president? Can the reining president then be considered independent minded?

2. The word "from time to time" and "4, 5 or 6 terms" by PM is disturbing. Who is supposed to determine when to have a minority president? The government? Will it be used as a tool to bypass certain candidate (as some suggested)?

3. The qualifying criteria has been raised. How many minority race CEO are there in Singapore that meets the criteria except appointed government ministers? How many minority race CEO actually wants to be president? How many minority race actually submits a nomination form in the previous elections?

4. Will it still be democratic if the government decides which minority race will be next president?

5. The first president is Yusuf Ishak (1959-1970). Benjamin Shears took over (1971-1981). Devan Nair is the thard (1981-1985). They are all appointed president and are all minority president. Some alluded that a Malay should be the next elected minority president. The 4th president Wee Kim Wee (1985-1993) was the last appointed president cum first "elected" president.  The fifth Ong Teng Cheong (1993-1999) is Chinese. SR Nathan (1999-2011) is actually a un-opposed minority race President. Current president Tony Tan is also Chinese. Therefore, it is probably true that the election is race based. Open election on race basis is possibly biased. We are simply not that open minded yet. America took few hundred years to have a first minority race president (John Hanson was arguably the first black president).

Looking at the situation above, There are a few options available so that it will be all fair. I can only think of two.

1. A cyclic selection of 4 races regardless of majority or minor race. It will be flawed if there is no nomination for the particular minority race term. Who then should the next president? An open election will probably be race based again.

2. Only minority race could be president.  After all Chinese have been holding PM post since independence. I really don't see a PM of other race in the foreseeable future (based on the race based bias). Even if a minority race PM is elected due to overwhelming popularity, the parliament is still filled with majority race MPs. This is the fairest option at the moment.