The Government announced a couple of weeks ago that every Singaporean child born next year will receive a special Jubilee Baby Gift to mark the 50th anniversary of the country's independence. Qualifying parents hoping for gold coins, a year's supply of pampers or free education will be sorely disappointed.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Grace Fu said the the gift pack is likely to include less than 10 items, and "We are not looking at, for example, free education and free childcare for the babies". More likely, expect to see subsidies, Medisave top-ups, and one-off vouchers, in the fashion of the Pioneer Generation Package.
Grace Fu was with Teo Chee Hean and others at the boondoggle in London's Victoria Park recently, for which a budget of $4.4 million was committed for the Singapore Day 2014 picnic. Assuming that 30,000 Singaporean babies will be brought into the world next year, and the same level of largesse extended to the tiny tots, each child could enjoy a windfall of $146.
The official report says over 9,000 Singaporeans living, working and studying in the United Kingdom and Europe were entertained and fed on Singapore Day. The math says $488.88 per person. Which is more than 3 times what a baby will get, if a similar size budget has been allocated for the Jubilee Baby Gift. Then again, the frolicking picnickers are of voting age. The babies of next year won't be eligible to vote for at least two decades, by which time a coalition government could be in place. It's a no-brainer where the goodies will be distributed.