Monday, November 12, 2007

Reservist dulan with SAF

The injustice and institutionalised disadvantage marches on...

Nov 12, 2007
Why so long to decide on ICT deferment, SAF?

I AM a national serviceman with HQ 26 Singapore Infantry Brigade and I had applied for deferment from my in-camp training (ICT) scheduled from today to Nov23.

My application was submitted on Oct 2 and I should have received a reply within 14 working days.

However, on Oct 22, I received an e-mail to tell me my application was still being processed. After that, I received two calls from the National Servicemen Services Centre (NSSC) to tell me my deferment was still being processed.

I was not the only one. None of the other deferment applications in my unit had received a response.

Last Friday, I called the NSSC and learnt that my application had been rejected and my status updated that very day - more than a month after I had applied and only one working day before the start of my ICT.

According to the NSSC, the approving authority for deferment had transferred from the unit operations officer to the commanding officer and that could have caused the delay.

To me, it is disingenuous to use transfer of authority as an excuse to sit on applications until the last minute. Applications submitted in a timely manner should be given a timely response.

For the record, my deferment application was for overseas work reasons and a timely response was needed to make contingency plans. I hope the Singapore Armed Forces understands that in the Singapore economy of today, many companies and jobs are regional in nature and require travel at short notice.

Steven Chan Kee-Lin

Too bad Mr Chan. You have to do your part because the govt loves foreigners more than S'poreans.

NS for you, jobs for foreigners!