Over 4,500 students sign petition seeking free NDP tickets after missing out on NE show

Thousands of spectators will be returning to NDP 2022 following two years of downsized celebrations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
PHOTO: Facebook/NDPeeps

When the Covid-19 pandemic led to a raft of safe distancing measures, Primary 5 pupils in 2020 and 2021 missed out on the chance to catch a preview of the National Day Parade (NDP) in person.

But when NDP National Education (NE) shows returned this year, these pupils, who are now in Primary 6 and Secondary 1, are lamenting that they lost out on this "once-in-a-lifetime" experience.

In an online petition created on July 12, a netizen with the username Yes Yes wrote: "It's very unfair [that] the Primary 5 [pupils] get to go [for an NE show]."

With more than 4,500 signatures to date, several netizens agreed that the Primary 6 and Secondary 1 students should have been given priority to attend an NE show.

"Is it because we're born in the wrong year? I don't think the government should allow this to happen," a netizen complained, while another pointed out that missing out on an NE show had deprived him of the chance to show "loyalty" to Singapore.

PHOTO: Screengrab/Change.org

Some netizens who signed the petition also shared their annoyance of Primary 5 students "flexing" about watching the NE show by posting videos on social media.

"I just want to go [to the] National Day Parade. If not, just give us free tickets man," a netizen wrote.

PHOTO: Screengrab/Change.org

This year, NE shows were held at the Marina Bay Floating Platform every Saturday from July 2 to 16.

AsiaOne has contacted the NDP organisers for comment.

This is the first time in three years that members of the public are able to attend NDP in person, following two years of downsized celebrations due to the pandemic. 

The organisers "really want to be able to bring as many Singaporeans to the float this year" with large scale events resuming,  executive committee chairman Brigadier-General Goh Pei Ming said in a media briefing last month.

This is also the last time that the celebration will be held at the floating platform before it is redeveloped into the NS Square. Next year's NDP will be held at the Padang. 

Last year, the parade was postponed from Aug 9 to Aug 21 for the very first time due to Covid-19 restrictions meant to discourage crowds from gathering around Marina Bay.

Only 1,000 Covid-19 frontliners, essential workers and community volunteers were invited to the event held at the Marina Bay Floating Platform.

The heartland fireworks and Red Lions displays, which were supposed to happen over the weekend of Aug 7 and 8, were also cancelled.

And in 2020, National Day celebrations featured a scaled-down parade attended by 150 people at the Padang, and an evening segment at the Star Performing Arts Centre had no live audience.

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chingshijie@asiaone.com