National Day Statement 2011 – Honouring Our First Generation

Forty-six years is hardly a significant span of time. Yet in just this short period, Singapore has transformed from a young nation coping with the challenges of independence, to a developed economy and a vibrant metropolis. We can now marvel at our many accomplishments and accolades, and celebrate our diversity and harmony.

Our country’s success is for all Singaporeans to share and celebrate. We have arrived at where we are today through the toil of many generations of Singaporeans, rich and poor, professionals and labourers, of all races and national origins.

This National Day, the Workers’ Party wishes to pay a special tribute to the first generation of Singaporeans who struggled to build our nation during the early decades of independence. They are now our parents and grandparents, uncles and aunts; the elderly cleaners; the retired civil servants and teachers; the first National Servicemen.

This generation embodies the true Singapore spirit—the determination to work hard, overcome the odds and carve out a better life for their children. They serve as an shining example for many future generations to follow.

History may only remember the kings and not the soldiers, but let us never forget the contributions of the first generation of Singaporeans. More than anyone else, they deserve to enjoy the fruits of our nation’s success.

The men and women in our pioneer generation have borne society’s burdens for the past 46 years and more. They gave the best years of their lives to our nation. Our nation must now give its best in return to them. Even as we strive for progress and economic efficiency, our nation has an obligation to help this generation of Singaporeans live their latter years in dignity, comfort and fulfilment; free from worry and fear for lack of provision.

As we celebrate our 46th National Day, the Workers’ Party would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all Singaporeans, especially our pioneer generation, for their sacrifices, hard work and contributions to building our nation to what it is today.

The Workers’ Party wishes all Singaporeans—including those living abroad—a very Happy 46th National Day.

Chairman, Workers’ Party and Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC
8 August 2011