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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

We Need a Time-out for National Service....

So another trainee has died and the family is suing the government for negligence.
In today's NST, there is a letter from the Chairman of the NS Scheme, Lee Lam Thye who happens to be an old classmate in secondary school.

In his letter he writes:

"There is only so much I can do as a non-executive chairman".
He appears frustrated that after spending so much effort for the NS, all the work is negated without the caring approach.

May I suggest he requests for an executive status and put things right or withdraw his support for such a program?

Once I supported the NS and thought it would be good for my son to attend but he was not called up. Now I am glad he was not exposed to such a risky program.
There was some talk about how expensive it would be to do a proper medical check for all trainees.

I suggest the camp period can be reduced by 2 weeks and the RM300 cost savings can immediately be used for the check-up. That will include X-rays, lung capacity and a general check-up. There is also an urgent need for the medical staff at the camps to realise that not all ailments will be solved with a dose of Panadol and rest.

We should also move towards NS for all youths beginning from the secondary schools (week-ends within the same states without stay-in) and culminating in a one-month program for all after the SPM.

I consider the current scheme as "too little, too late" as most of the youths would have developed strong habits by the age of 18 years.

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