Official Releases

Posted: 07 Jul 2014, 1745 hours (GMT +8)

Oral Reply by Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen to Parliamentary Question on Children of Permanent Residents Serving National Service

Mr Arthur Fong: To ask the Minister for Defence among the 532,000 permanent residents (PRs) in 2013 (a) how many children of these PRs upon reaching 18 years old (i) has served or is serving national service (NS); (ii) did not serve NS; and (b) how many in this group has relinquished their PR status.

Dr Ng Eng Hen: Madam, the member asked a number of questions related to Permanent Residents (PRs) who serve or do not serve National Service (NS). He based his question on the total number of PRs in 2013. The total number of PRs in Singapore in 2013 or in any years is not an appropriate population to base queries or answers on. For the simple reason that that number includes people who are not liable for NS. For example, they include female PRs, first generation PRs, male PRs who have already completed their NS and all those who have not reached the age of 18 years to serve full-time NS.

The majority of NS-liable PRs serve NS. Over the past five years, about 7,200 males who had become PRs under the sponsorship of their parents, what we term as 2nd generation PRs who are liable for NS, were enlisted for and served NS. Over the same five-year period, about 2,600 second generation PR males renounced their PR status, prior to serving NS. As MINDEF has cautioned, these ex-PRs who have not served their NS, will face serious adverse consequences when they subsequently apply to study or work in Singapore.

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