For a safe and secure Singapore

For a safe and secure Singapore

There will be an increase in community policing to prevent and deter crime, said the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) in the addenda to the President's address yesterday.

Also in the works: A new Police Divisional headquarters and two new Neighbourhood Police Centres (NPCs).

The latest initiatives come under the banner of a "safe and secure Singapore" and lists several measures, highlighting the need to maintain "safe environments and secure borders" and to "safeguard and advance our interests abroad", the Government said in a statement yesterday.

To do this, it must "continue to invest and build capabilities for a strong and capable SAF, an effective Home Team, and a top-notch Foreign Service", the statement added.

The measures are in response to President Tony Tan Keng Yam's opening address at the second session of the 12th Parliament last Friday.

MINISTRY OF HOME AFFAIRS (MHA) WILL...

Increase community policing and engagement to prevent and deter crime. The Singapore Police Force (SPF) will expand the Community Policing System - a police strategy that banks on technology to enhance police operational effectiveness - to all Neighbourhood Police Centres (NPC) by next year. The SPF will also set up a new Police Divisional Headquarters and two NPCs soon.

The NPCs will be revamped to provide round-the-clock electronic services to the public.

The MHA will introduce legislation "to deal decisively" with crime syndicates, regulate remote gambling and provide support for the Private Member's Bill on the prevention of human trafficking.

The SPF will also deploy cameras more extensively to support police work. For example, police cameras will be installed in all HDB blocks by 2016. The SPF will also pilot the use of body-worn cameras, while the Singapore Civil Defence Force is acquiring unmanned fire-fighting machines. Meanwhile, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority will introduce a new generation of biometric passports and expand the use of biometrics and automation for more efficient clearance.

The Singapore Prison Service will implement the Conditional Remission System and Mandatory Aftercare Scheme in association with community partners. This is to strengthen throughcare - a concept that aims to make rehabilitation and reintegration seamless - starting from when offenders are jailed and extending to aftercare to help them reintegrate into society once released.

In foreign policy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will...

Maintain good relations and build on bilateral cooperation with Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei.

Actively contribute to ASEAN's regional integration efforts towards an ASEAN Community by next year.

Build on links with the US, China, Japan, Australia, India and the European Union. At the same time, the ministry will "identify emerging opportunities in new markets", including the Middle East, Turkey, Latin America and Africa.

Leverage on technology to improve the provision of consular support to overseas Singaporeans to meet increasing demand for consular services and assistance in the coming years.

On national security, the Prime Minister's Office (National Security Coordination Secretariat) will...

Continue to anticipate emerging issues and national security risks through the Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Programme, which has developed processes and products that can "identify, analyse, model and monitor areas such as the evolving range of cyber threats, extreme weather hazards and food security".

Continue to secure Singapore's cyber environment and strengthen its resilience against cyber threats through the National Cyber Security R&D Programme.

In defence, the Ministry of Defence will...

Continue to invest in advanced technologies for the armed forces. The ministry will upgrade the fleet of F-16 fighters, acquire the A330 Multi-role Tanker Transport aircraft, two Type-218SG submarines and two more Sikorsky S-70B Naval Helicopters over the next five years.

Put in place a "multi-layered air defence" system with the deployment of Spyder and Aster-30 Surface-To-Air Missile systems. Acquire more Terrex Infantry Fighting Vehicles and work towards doubling the number of units operating on wheeled or tracked platforms.

zothman@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on May 23, 2014.
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