Why should Singaporeans Boycott Uber, UberX or Uber Taxi?

With past couple of weeks with Uber company offering free rides under UberX or Uber Taxi, Consumers were delighted that they were able to get two free rides a day. While  the drivers for UberX and Taxis are happily earning to the max.

It brought cheers to consumers and drivers, but there are some angry passengers too. They couldn’t get a free ride after trying to get one after 45 minutes. It’s just a marketing strategy by Uber to market their services to the Singapore consumers.

Let’s get back to reality, here are a list of concern that Singaporeans should think about before using their services again.

1) Credit card information – While the credit card details are stored in the Uber data storage which might be prone by hackers

2) Global Position System (GPS) – Your traveling pattern will be known to unknown as Uber is using GPS to track where your journey starts and ends. Thus disclosing your location to unknown sources.

3) Credit card payment – The payment terminal is not located in Singapore but in United States where you might suffered exchange loss. Right now there isn’t significant different as they are still offering 25% discount on your taxi rides.

4) Unethical ways of doing business

I) Seeking customers to release details of  which taxi drivers and their contact who do not sign up with Uber. While it’s no wrong to share the good things to others, but it’s wrong to share our contact to other people without our permission. It’s the same that as a taxi driver, we do not send out passenger contact details to third parties. It’s the privacy of our rights that the contact must be kept confidential at all times.

II) Which ever taxi drivers that took up their free IPhone and their jobs, received a call from Uber that they are not allowed to use other third parties apps and are told to delete them off. Who are they to mind our business which apps taxi drivers use since they do not have any legal document that say that taxi drivers are not allowed to use other apps. This also create an anti-competition act in Singapore!

5) Most Importantly, Why we Singaporeans should boycott Uber?

While the government are not allowed to ban Uber outright due to the free trade agreement, but What I’m seeking is changing the business model of Uber and UberX which is using metered-charged system (I have previously mention in my blog).

The company comes here to earn money in Singapore without any employment benefit to Singaporeans. Yes they have Singaporean on the ground to run the promotion and signing up drivers. But once they have establish themselves in Singapore, all these job are made redundant. For your information, even their telephone operators are foreigners based overseas, using internet to contact drivers and customers. In other words, their company is nothing but an empty shell in Singapore.

While we welcome foreign companies to set-up their business in Singapore, we need to see economic growth and employment benefit for Singapore. Without any employment benefit to Singaporeans, what the use to welcome this type of company to operate in Singapore? I would rather don’t welcome them at all!

The choice is yours, nobody is stopping you from using Uber! But think again, if any company that comes to Singapore to start business without any employment benefit to Singaporeans, then there will be no job for Singaporeans in the future.


Indonesia put Singapore to shame on rules to protect locals.

Indonesia put Singapore to shame on rules to protect locals.

It is reported by Straits Times that Indonesia have come up it’s own version of the  Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) to have firms to hire locals before expats, barring 19 human resources-related position to be taken by expats in their country. (link)

While details are still being worked out, Indonesia’s Manpower Minister Muhaimin Iskandar have said that this policy seeks to get employers to consider an Indonesian candidate before a foreign one, especially for professional and managerial posts.

“Employers must ensure that each foreign hire has at least two local deputies or managers to whom he can transfer his expertise or skills. Companies have to explain why only a foreigner can fill the job vacancy and declared what skills and expertise he has that local does not have.”. – ST report

In Singapore, Ministry of Manpower in its press release on 23 Sept 2013 says that MOM expects all firms to consider Singaporeans fairly for jobs, based on merit. All firms are strongly encouraged to advertise their job vacancies and must ensure that jobs advertised are open to Singaporeans.

Changes implemented to the local hiring practice in the announced new framework are as follows:

  • Firms making new EP applications2 must advertise the job vacancy on a new jobs bank administered by the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA)3.  The advertisement must be open to Singaporeans, comply with the Tripartite Guidelines on Fair Employment Practices4, and run for at least 14 calendar days.
  • These requirements must be met before an EP application is submitted to MOM. These new rules will come into effect on 1 August 2014.
  • Advertising on the jobs bank will benefit both employers and Singaporean job-seekers, as it facilitates better matching of vacancies with job-seekers. Employers will have access to a larger pool of potential candidates. It will also increase the visibility of job openings to all Singaporeans, and will help more to benefit from the better jobs created.

In comparison with Indonesia, Singapore merely requires that the companies must advertise in the jobs bank for at least 14 days before the advertisement can be publicly advertised while Indonesia followed Australia’s strict labor standards in employment policies to protect their local citizens.

With globalisation, many multinational companies are seeking to expand their bases world-wide.  Costs saving, ease of conducting business operations and a safe/stable environment to conduct business operations are their main considerations and not employing their fellow locals in the key positions.

With the ever-increasing numbers of foreigners coming to Singapore to work and companies setting up locally, the changes to manpower guidelines does nothing much but to only inconvenience the employers up to 14 days. After which they are pretty much free to hire foreigners or their own countrymen to work in Singapore at their own discreet.

Having said that, Ministry of Manpower (Singapore) might want to relook on their policies at making concrete changes in the employment policies to ensure that her citizens is given fair considerations for employment before giving the opportunity up to an expat.

It’s a real shame that Singapore had adopted a lesser approach of the manpower issues. Even if the Ministry of Manpower should adopt the same approach like Indonesia did, Singapore need not be worried that foreign investment will take a plunge as Singapore already possess the best attractions for any business that there is.

Special Thanks to The Online Citizen for editing.

The unbecoming of Singapore Politicians

After the new parliamentary re-open earlier this week, we are supposedly expecting the politicians debate on the hot topics like, The Haze, The New MDA regulation….

But what occupy the main story, is the Town Council Saga. What had been peacefully settle and yet, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, again accusing the workers’ Party to come clean on the Town Council Saga on the Cleaning of the Market. Mr Low Thia Khiang had again dismiss it as a miscommunication.

Today, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong had thrown in his weight behind Dr Balakrishnan, again asking WP to come clean Town Council Saga, putting the WP MP integrity in questions.

Now the main question is not the Town Council Saga, but I am wondering if the PAP are busy fixing the opposition party or solving the current problems Singaporean faced? It’s not hard to see that PAP are more interested in fixing the opposition party than solving problems. They are just degrading the WP to shit. Making sure that only PAP have the cleanest image party in Singapore.

Before calling the WP to come clean and raises the integrity of WP MP, Dr Balakrishnan should come clean on the over budget of the YOG a few years ago, the flooding failure in orchard road. Being a minister with a million dollars paycheck, shouldn’t he be responsible for all the failure where the ministry he work in? Can we ask Dr Balakrishnan to step down for all those failure?

On the other hand, WP had done themselves no favour. They should acknowledge this short coming (whether Miscommunication or not) and made known to public the step taken to prevent the recurring of the similar incident happening again.

Being the elected MP, all MP should have this bearing in mind: To serve wholeheartedly! Stop all these bull shitting and get on to work. Get together, be it PAP or otherwise, debate on the current issue that are concerning Singaporean. The Town Council Saga should best left it alone as it is not longer the main concern of the Singaporean. So get down to work, for you are paid million to work not politicking…

A new Job portal for Singaporean

A new initiative by Transitioning.org – A online Job Portal for Singaporean (Link)

It is created in the facebook group and all Singaporean and employers are encouraged to join. This FB Group is to offer a new platform where employees and employers comes together to match the jobs in the market at no extra costs to all parties.

It had gathered more than 2000 members within 28 hours of operation. More noticeable members in the group are:

1) Gilbert Goh

2) Leong Sze Hian

3) Benny Se Teo

4) Vivian Pan

5) Lawrence Chong

Also, HR Personal are in the group to offer jobs to Singaporean locally or overseas.

More member are expected to join as this job portal truly served the needs of the Singaporean.

It doesn’t matter you are whether you are white collar or blue collar, employee or employer, you are welcome to join this new initiative.

Fallen cases of Ministry denying help to the needy

Yesterday, I was at the HLP to attend a speech by Vivian Pan to pledge for Mercy for the 31 year old women who had killed her son.

What keeps me thinking after the speech by Leong Sze Hian. In his speech, he had met with countless of single parent, be it unwed, divorced or the other partner run off with other party. What strike me the most when he shared, is the policy in Singapore are so rigid to sometime that these category of people falls into the trap.

Like Mr Leong had share, when the a couple divorced, in his case study, a single Mum had the option to buy over the HDB used to share with her ex-husband. But the HDB rules stated that she had to pay back the amount that her ex-husband had paid using his CPF. Thus she was forced to sell her flat.

She couldn’t afford to buy another new HDB flat as she had to wait for 30 months before she can apply for one again. If she want to buy a resale flat, given the current high COV, she couldn’t afford to buy it. Even if she wants to get a rental flat from HDB, she have to wait for another 30 months.

This single mum is one of the person that had fallen into the crack of the government policy. There are many more cases that are happening everyday in Singapore. So what can the Government do to help those cases that had fallen through the policy crack?

Here are my humble view towards all fallen cases:

1) Policies are in place to safe guard others from gaining unfair advantage while trying to help Singaporean.

2) In exercising the policy, the policy maker should be flexible enough to see special case like the one mentioned above on the case by case basis. They shouldn’t outright reject the cases when it doesn’t falls into the category.

3) In the above mentioned case, the HDB should apply the human touch and let the single mum keep the HDB while letting her to work out the installment plan to pay back her ex-husband CPF contribution to the flat.

The policies had both side of the situation they faced and I don’t deny that to safe guard the policy, standard rules must be strictly follow. But in the light of the fallen case, I feel human touch should be applicable as well.

Civil Servant who carry out the policy should not be so rigged not to help the fallen case. If civil servant can’t help those fallen cases should help to expedite up to the ministry for review and see how best the ministry can help. So do not stop those fallen cases at the front desk of the ministry. Help each other as we are Singaporean!!!