Singapore Expats Forum

Guide to NS issues

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 05 Feb 2010 9:01 am

Yeah, you could probably wait until you reach 40. After that they would not only fine you but you would probably also incur a jail term as well as you would be considered too old for NS anyway, but they could not be seen as letting you off lightly.

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Postby Mad Scientist » Fri, 05 Feb 2010 2:50 pm

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Postby loki112000 » Sat, 06 Feb 2010 8:15 am

That is their law I guess.
I can't afford to give up 2.5 years of my life because I am building a life in Australia now, trying to buy a house, establishing a career and a relationship.

Just want to say though that I do not believe my parents are to blame at all. They never received any notification about any of this or even their responisibilities to do this. When they went to renounce their own citizenship nobody spoke to them about these factors, they didn't even explain when my mother said she had a son or a daughter that this could occur. So if anything, the lack of a simple renunciation pack or detailed information is to blame and not any individual.

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Postby loki112000 » Sat, 06 Feb 2010 8:22 am

Oh and 1 other point that is a big flaw.

They say that you must renounce at the age of 21 because I am not legally old enough to make a decision to renounce before this age. Yet before the age of 11 I have to state my intention to renounce.... but how could I have an intention to renounce at the age of say 6 when they clearly state I am not old enough until 21 to know that I want to renounce...
How would my parents even truly know at the age of 10 my intentions at 21. They could assume this is the case but already by the procedures in place there is a flaw in the concept.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 06 Feb 2010 10:25 am

loki, tell you what.

You just keep ranting whether you think it's fair or not, or who's to blame or not, and then just bring your butt back to Singapore and argue with the government. We are only giving you the information as we see it. If you think you can do something that many other people have tried and failed at, please, be our guests. We are only trying to help.

There is an old saying, "You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink" So, please, save your breath ranting here and debating semantics.

As far as blaming you parents. Don't. But realize, any parent who is planning on immigrating is making a HUGE decision when deciding on moving a family, so it would be common sense to find out what implications there might be when doing so. The information has always been available, even before the internet age.

As far as the intention to renounce being a flaw. You & your family immigrated did you? That should answer your question. Stating at age 11 your intention to renounce at the age of 11 doesn't mean you cannot change you mind. I don't think Singapore would turn down you offer to stay and become cannon fodder, do you? However, if you don't file the intent at age eleven then you have a problem. So where's the flaw (other than your flawed thinking that your parents didn't screw it up).

Kind of like a parachute jump. You can book your slot on the plane, get on the plane, take off in the Plane. Hook up your ripcord to the static line and move up to the open door. But you still do not have to jump. But you cannot jump at all unless you make all the proper preparations first, can you. :-|

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Postby Koalabear » Sat, 06 Feb 2010 2:25 pm

sundaymorningstaple wrote:loki, tell you what.

You just keep ranting whether you think it's fair or not, or who's to blame or not, and then just bring your butt back to Singapore and argue with the government. We are only giving you the information as we see it. If you think you can do something that many other people have tried and failed at, please, be our guests. We are only trying to help.

There is an old saying, "You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink" So, please, save your breath ranting here and debating semantics.

As far as blaming you parents. Don't. But realize, any parent who is planning on immigrating is making a HUGE decision when deciding on moving a family, so it would be common sense to find out what implications there might be when doing so. The information has always been available, even before the internet age.

As far as the intention to renounce being a flaw. You & your family immigrated did you? That should answer your question. Stating at age 11 your intention to renounce at the age of 11 doesn't mean you cannot change you mind. I don't think Singapore would turn down you offer to stay and become cannon fodder, do you? However, if you don't file the intent at age eleven then you have a problem. So where's the flaw (other than your flawed thinking that your parents didn't screw it up).

Kind of like a parachute jump. You can book your slot on the plane, get on the plane, take off in the Plane. Hook up your ripcord to the static line and move up to the open door. But you still do not have to jump. But you cannot jump at all unless you make all the proper preparations first, can you. :-|


I am just wondering. Why doesn't Singapore Immigration Agency simply print information booklets to advise migrating families on the implications of NS, with the simple flow chart you guys have provided so parents can avoid making these mistakes? I believe information booklets existed a long time before internet era. I truly believe that a lot of parents have made these mistakes, and if the government can print out information booklets on sars prevention, benefits of having babies, safe sex, why not print a bloody simple booklet on IMPLICATIONS of migration on NS and preventive measures?

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 06 Feb 2010 4:26 pm

If you but think about it, it makes good sense.

Why should a country with a decreasing fertility rate, which means a decreasing number of eligible males to do national service, make it easy to avoid the legal obligations that one inherits upon birth in Singapore. All countries that have mandatory military service thrust upon them is an obligation due to being born in that country.

Unlike some countries though, Singapore DOES give you a way out of it IF you do your homework. Why should they make it easy and cut their own throats? They need all the manpower that they can get.

A modicum of common sense goes a long, long way to understanding their thought processes. Difficult? No, not if you find out what your obligations are regarding your children and their obligations as citizens of Singapore BEFORE you jump off the deep end of the pool.

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Postby Koalabear » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 12:39 am

sundaymorningstaple wrote:If you but think about it, it makes good sense.

Why should a country with a decreasing fertility rate, which means a decreasing number of eligible males to do national service, make it easy to avoid the legal obligations that one inherits upon birth in Singapore. All countries that have mandatory military service thrust upon them is an obligation due to being born in that country.

Unlike some countries though, Singapore DOES give you a way out of it IF you do your homework. Why should they make it easy and cut their own throats? They need all the manpower that they can get.

A modicum of common sense goes a long, long way to understanding their thought processes. Difficult? No, not if you find out what your obligations are regarding your children and their obligations as citizens of Singapore BEFORE you jump off the deep end of the pool.


So you nailed it. The government DOES NOT want you to know for the nation's INTEREST. I believe most Singaporean parents tried to find out, but got directed to navigate their way in a maze of agencies and none can provide them with an answer. Now you blame their parents for not having common sense, can i say lol?? I believe they all have done all they can to uncover the mystery, but few succeed, as simple as that.

On the bright side, its just Singapore. When I traveled to USA across the cornwall, ny border they still put this big "we'll not forget you" poster to forewarn all deserters from the vietnam war era I guess.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 2:03 am

Koalabear wrote:
So you nailed it. The government DOES NOT want you to know for the nation's INTEREST. I believe most Singaporean parents tried to find out, but got directed to navigate their way in a maze of agencies and none can provide them with an answer. Now you blame their parents for not having common sense, can i say lol?? I believe they all have done all they can to uncover the mystery, but few succeed, as simple as that.

On the bright side, its just Singapore. When I traveled to USA across the cornwall, ny border they still put this big "we'll not forget you" poster to forewarn all deserters from the vietnam war era I guess.


That's kind of a childish way of looking at it don't you think? All governments have to enact rules & regulations in order to keep the country sovereign don't you think? And, there are many, nay, the vast majority of Singaporean immigrants who took their sons out of Singapore over the past 40 years without a problem. It's only a very few who have problems. Those are the few who's parents didn't have enough common sense to find out their obligations before leaving. Most did their homework, realizing that all citizens inherit certain obligations as well as benefits of citizenship. Unfortunately, your parents seem to have been one of the few who neglected their parental duties. And it would appear you have grown up in their mold, always blaming the system instead of their incompetence.

Oh, maze of agencies? Try two. ICA and the CMPB. Doesn't sound like a maze to me.

Sure, the US had it's fair share of runners as well, as does every country. But eventually, we gave amnesty to them but, again, we could afford to do it as our fertility rate is 2.3 so we have more than enough males to supply our military. So much so that we mothballed the draft back in 1975 after we departed VN. (Our form of mandatory military service - we now have an all volunteer military) Needless to say, I don't think much of those deserters either.

The way you are whining, it sounds like you could have used a couple of years of NS to maybe help you to become a man. Something , from the sounds you are making here, that has yet to transpire.

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Postby Koalabear » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 2:54 am

sundaymorningstaple wrote:
Koalabear wrote:
So you nailed it. The government DOES NOT want you to know for the nation's INTEREST. I believe most Singaporean parents tried to find out, but got directed to navigate their way in a maze of agencies and none can provide them with an answer. Now you blame their parents for not having common sense, can i say lol?? I believe they all have done all they can to uncover the mystery, but few succeed, as simple as that.

On the bright side, its just Singapore. When I traveled to USA across the cornwall, ny border they still put this big "we'll not forget you" poster to forewarn all deserters from the vietnam war era I guess.


That's kind of a childish way of looking at it don't you think? All governments have to enact rules & regulations in order to keep the country sovereign don't you think? And, there are many, nay, the vast majority of Singaporean immigrants who took their sons out of Singapore over the past 40 years without a problem. It's only a very few who have problems. Those are the few who's parents didn't have enough common sense to find out their obligations before leaving. Most did their homework, realizing that all citizens inherit certain obligations as well as benefits of citizenship. Unfortunately, your parents seem to have been one of the few who neglected their parental duties. And it would appear you have grown up in their mold, always blaming the system instead of their incompetence.

Oh, maze of agencies? Try two. ICA and the CMPB. Doesn't sound like a maze to me.

Sure, the US had it's fair share of runners as well, as does every country. But eventually, we gave amnesty to them but, again, we could afford to do it as our fertility rate is 2.3 so we have more than enough males to supply our military. So much so that we mothballed the draft back in 1975 after we departed VN. (Our form of mandatory military service - we now have an all volunteer military) Needless to say, I don't think much of those deserters either.

The way you are whining, it sounds like you could have used a couple of years of NS to maybe help you to become a man. Something , from the sounds you are making here, that has yet to transpire.


excuse me? When did I blame the system for enacting rules and regulations to uphold the enlistment act?

Maybe not a maze of agencies but definitely a maze of people to talk to and none will tell you the answer even if they knew. How do you know there is a 'minority' of parents with this problem? I know 2 parents who migrated with their son with clear knowledge of the ramifications of potential NS default charges. They balanced the risks and benefits accordingly and decided immigration is the better choice, and had never regretted since. Depending on your definition of problem (they did not file the intent of citizenship annulment intent before age 11), their sons lived with the problem gladly knowing that they at least have the power of choice to serve or not to serve.

At the end of the day you realize this is about conflict of INTERESTS when a country wants to protect her freedom vs parents who want to protect their son's freedom in another country.

Im not sure why it looked like Im whining to you even though I never had these problems to begin with. I was glad that my parents had done their homework and allow me the freedom of choice to serve or not serve.
Last edited by Koalabear on Sun, 07 Feb 2010 3:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Koalabear » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 3:00 am

loki112000 wrote:Oh and 1 other point that is a big flaw.

They say that you must renounce at the age of 21 because I am not legally old enough to make a decision to renounce before this age. Yet before the age of 11 I have to state my intention to renounce.... but how could I have an intention to renounce at the age of say 6 when they clearly state I am not old enough until 21 to know that I want to renounce...
How would my parents even truly know at the age of 10 my intentions at 21. They could assume this is the case but already by the procedures in place there is a flaw in the concept.


Why not assume they did it on purpose so they can label you as a NS defaulter and compel you to go back to serve to clear your criminal record or see your aging grandparents who missed you very much? The concept is not flawed, its actually very well designed. They probably did a statistical study and found that a significant number of parents who forgot to renounce have to send their kids back to serve. If not, as I suggested, they will print out information booklets to the Australian embassy to clarify these matters. End of the day its fair game because they scheme day and night to get all the manpower they need for their interest while you stay in Australia for your interest.

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Postby loki112000 » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 8:51 am

The thing that scares me is that I am assumed guilty until proven innocent.
I do not blame my parents nor will I ever.
In every country the government is there to serve the people, the people are not there to serve a government. The people may serve their country through laws and through government process and procedure.

At the end of the day, my parents had to research something they knew nothing about. They filled out all required forms and there was never any indication or notification sent to anyone about the circumstances. Never once when I did visit Singapore on my Australian passport with the Country of Birth as Singapore was I informed that this would be an issue, in fact nobody here was ever informed that I was a Singaporean citizen in any way shape or form. Don't forget this is before the time of the internet too where information was readily accessible.

Life continued on for me in Australia, I was schooled right through to University, found work and had relationships here. My parents believed they had severed all ties with Singapore legally and were never informed otherwise.

So yes Singapore has protected its interests by trying to hold onto citizens to serve National Service. And I will never see my family in Singapore, or the house where my grandparents raised me again.
And yes I could go back and potentially fight or die for a country where my ties are only my family, but my life now is in Australia.

All I am asking for is an offshore appeal system where my case could be looked at as an individual and all through the process I have asked for all the information and received one or two line emails and shirks on the phone.

So I ask you? Who is this for? For the better of the people of Singapore? This whole forum almost every second topic is scared people asking if they could go back to Singapore and see relatives or what their case is about? Why would the whole forum have so many questions if they were getting answers from the government of Singapore and their agencies?

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Postby Koalabear » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 9:34 am

loki112000 wrote:The thing that scares me is that I am assumed guilty until proven innocent.
I do not blame my parents nor will I ever.
In every country the government is there to serve the people, the people are not there to serve a government. The people may serve their country through laws and through government process and procedure.

At the end of the day, my parents had to research something they knew nothing about. They filled out all required forms and there was never any indication or notification sent to anyone about the circumstances. Never once when I did visit Singapore on my Australian passport with the Country of Birth as Singapore was I informed that this would be an issue, in fact nobody here was ever informed that I was a Singaporean citizen in any way shape or form. Don't forget this is before the time of the internet too where information was readily accessible.

Life continued on for me in Australia, I was schooled right through to University, found work and had relationships here. My parents believed they had severed all ties with Singapore legally and were never informed otherwise.

So yes Singapore has protected its interests by trying to hold onto citizens to serve National Service. And I will never see my family in Singapore, or the house where my grandparents raised me again.
And yes I could go back and potentially fight or die for a country where my ties are only my family, but my life now is in Australia.

All I am asking for is an offshore appeal system where my case could be looked at as an individual and all through the process I have asked for all the information and received one or two line emails and shirks on the phone.

So I ask you? Who is this for? For the better of the people of Singapore? This whole forum almost every second topic is scared people asking if they could go back to Singapore and see relatives or what their case is about? Why would the whole forum have so many questions if they were getting answers from the government of Singapore and their agencies?


Because the government doesn't want people to go back and boast "I did this and this, avoided NS obligation and Im back for shopping". It serves as a good deterrant for people harbouring the same ideas. The rules and regulations are enacted not to be fair, but to protect the government's interests. SMS has been arguing that parents lack common sense because they underestimated the government's resolve to enforce the enlistment act.

I beg to differ though. I find that only politically astute people (like my dad and sms) know how to dissect the policy and anticipate the government's moves to avoid all their technicality traps like filing intent on renounciation.

At least you have the luxury of choice most Singaporeans do not have. Either serve to see the people you want, or ask mindef to kiss your backside. You can always ask them to visit you in JB which is what alot of people do.

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Postby Mad Scientist » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 10:08 am

Koalabear wrote:
loki112000 wrote:The thing that scares me is that I am assumed guilty until proven innocent.
I do not blame my parents nor will I ever.
In every country the government is there to serve the people, the people are not there to serve a government. The people may serve their country through laws and through government process and procedure.

At the end of the day, my parents had to research something they knew nothing about. They filled out all required forms and there was never any indication or notification sent to anyone about the circumstances. Never once when I did visit Singapore on my Australian passport with the Country of Birth as Singapore was I informed that this would be an issue, in fact nobody here was ever informed that I was a Singaporean citizen in any way shape or form. Don't forget this is before the time of the internet too where information was readily accessible.

Life continued on for me in Australia, I was schooled right through to University, found work and had relationships here. My parents believed they had severed all ties with Singapore legally and were never informed otherwise.

So yes Singapore has protected its interests by trying to hold onto citizens to serve National Service. And I will never see my family in Singapore, or the house where my grandparents raised me again.
And yes I could go back and potentially fight or die for a country where my ties are only my family, but my life now is in Australia.

All I am asking for is an offshore appeal system where my case could be looked at as an individual and all through the process I have asked for all the information and received one or two line emails and shirks on the phone.

So I ask you? Who is this for? For the better of the people of Singapore? This whole forum almost every second topic is scared people asking if they could go back to Singapore and see relatives or what their case is about? Why would the whole forum have so many questions if they were getting answers from the government of Singapore and their agencies?


Because the government doesn't want people to go back and boast "I did this and this, avoided NS obligation and Im back for shopping". It serves as a good deterrant for people harbouring the same ideas. The rules and regulations are enacted not to be fair, but to protect the government's interests. SMS has been arguing that parents lack common sense because they underestimated the government's resolve to enforce the enlistment act.

I beg to differ though. I find that only politically astute people (like my dad and sms) know how to dissect the policy and anticipate the government's moves to avoid all their technicality traps like filing intent on renounciation.

At least you have the luxury of choice most Singaporeans do not have. Either serve to see the people you want, or ask mindef to kiss your backside. You can always ask them to visit you in JB which is what alot of people do.


Koala Bear

About NS and its renunciation , your parents if they serve the NS before like myself will know where to get those infos. It is smack right infront of the counter at CMPB. I am not sure they have removed it or not but I got those infos.

There are only two places that will answer you on NS i.e CMPB and ICA. I have boys too and they all have renounce and follow the protocol to the T. I only stumble on this forum last year after I have done for my sons five years ago. So I felt oblige to share what I learned.
It is not that hard if you look it up and read the criteria.
PArents got into trouble after the migration. As I have said before if parents who have lived in SG and serve NS before , they will know where to look it up. I think applying for OZ immigration is more daunting the NS thingey.
Most who migrated knew about this ruling , it is up to individual whether to follow the protocol or not.
You live in OZ there are those thing that OZ Gahmen did that will not please you , it is the same in SG Gahmen. I can name afew but that is not the point. You have just got to learn from others and don't make the same mistake
No one is blaming any body here and everyone is entitled to their opinion. For myself , I talk the talk and walk the talk.

Just live and let live !! Relax it is not worth to go on about what SG Gahmen did and so on . There is NOT ONE SINGLE BIT YOU CAN CHANGE.

MS(':)')
Last edited by Mad Scientist on Wed, 20 Oct 2010 3:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 07 Feb 2010 10:24 am

loki112000 wrote:The thing that scares me is that I am assumed guilty until proven innocent.

The thing that scares me is the fact that you have the chutzpah to think you are even innocent until. And the fact that you have the nerve to "assume" anything at all.

I do not blame my parents nor will I ever.
In every country the government is there to serve the people, the people are not there to serve a government. The people may serve their country through laws and through government process and procedure.

At the end of the day, my parents had to research something they knew nothing about. They filled out all required forms and there was never any indication or notification sent to anyone about the circumstances. Never once when I did visit Singapore on my Australian passport with the Country of Birth as Singapore was I informed that this would be an issue, in fact nobody here was ever informed that I was a Singaporean citizen in any way shape or form. Don't forget this is before the time of the internet too where information was readily accessible.

Methinks you don't give you parents enough credit. Do you "really" believe you father didn't know anything about NS and your obligations? Do you honestly believe he didn't have any male friends who did NS (Or, is it the one thing that hasn't been brought out in this conversation. Is your father a Malay? Then it might have been possible that he would have been exempted from NS in the first place. If this is the case, then it's understandable why you don't know - Course then the JB option shouldn't be a problem if you want to see your grandparents. Otherwise, methinks the only credit you should be giving your parents is for screwing up you life. This is why my son is going to do NS (and he's a citizen by birth (not naturalization) of two countries, so neither has the right of "precedence". By him electing to do NS, he gets a chance to build networks here that will last him the rest of his life. Additionally, it gives him to return to Singapore at any time in the future, for whatever reason, and work, play or live. The choice is "his" and his alone, This way, my actions do not "limit" his choices in the future, like your parents hampered yours.

Life continued on for me in Australia, I was schooled right through to University, found work and had relationships here. My parents believed they had severed all ties with Singapore legally and were never informed otherwise.

So yes Singapore has protected its interests by trying to hold onto citizens to serve National Service. And I will never see my family in Singapore, or the house where my grandparents raised me again.
And yes I could go back and potentially fight or die for a country where my ties are only my family, but my life now is in Australia.

All I am asking for is an offshore appeal system where my case could be looked at as an individual and all through the process I have asked for all the information and received one or two line emails and shirks on the phone.

So I ask you? Who is this for? For the better of the people of Singapore? This whole forum almost every second topic is scared people asking if they could go back to Singapore and see relatives or what their case is about? Why would the whole forum have so many questions if they were getting answers from the government of Singapore and their agencies?


So Many? Boy, you are really a deluded soul. Do you have any idea of the immigrations numbers of Singapore over the past 40 years? I think it somewhere around 1100-1500 "families" per year now. Assuming that half of them are families with children, and half of them have male children then that 300 or more male children annually who leave the system. On these boards? What 8 or 9 who have actually left and are screwed? The rest are on here to figure out how to get PR and not cause their PR sons to incur that liability. So, it would appear that the vast majority don't have any problems with the "maze" which then makes me even more suspect............. :roll:

Oh, you constant railing (denial) is a waste of energy. You just need to figure out what you are going to do and/or accept the consequences of your actions. Simple really.


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