On August 9th 2015, Singapore celebrates 50 years as a nation. So much has happened in this tiny island in the last 50 years, so much has changed too. I was born and brought up in Singapore and I have lived here most of my life. I am proud to be a Singaporean and I am proud of the many achievements of my country. I have travelled extensively and I am able to objectively compare and contrast Singapore with other nations. I have also met many people from different walks of life, of different nationalities and gender, of different religions and cultural orientations, who have spoken nothing but praise for our nation. As Singapore turns 50 I want to share with you why I am happy to live in Singapore.


There is peace and tranquillity in Singapore. Unlike many other countries which are torn by strife and war, by riots and uprising, by massacre and unnecessary killing, by shooting and bombing, Singapore is peaceful. The people of our country are protected from these unpleasant experiences by the good governance that we have been fortunate to enjoy for the last 50 years. People are free to do their work, pursue their dreams, educate themselves and enjoy all that life has to offer.

Safe and Secure

Singapore is safe and secure. I can walk along the streets late at night and I know that I am safe. We may have police cameras around today but in the past, even without them, the crime rate was not as high as in other countries. I love the fact that I can walk on the streets at any time of the day and night without fear of getting mugged or knifed. In some countries people are afraid of going out in the evenings, parking in a carpark and walking on the streets.


Singapore is cosmopolitan and there are many different ethnic groups living here. I love the rich tapestry of cultures and the opportunity to participate in so many different traditional festivals. I enjoy engaging and being involved in the Chinese festivals such as Chinese New Year and the 8th Moon. When we were children, my parents would buy each of us a Chinese lantern and we were so proud to carry them during the eight moon festival. Then there are the Hindu festivals like Thaipusam and Deepavali. My mother and her sisters would take us to the Perumal Temple to observe Thaipusam each year. Visiting each other’s homes at Hari Raya and other festivals is such fun! At Christmas we sang carols and we loved reading A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Today Christmas is a wonderful time in Singapore as the streets are decorated and there is such a sense of joy. Singaporeans have also embraced with much pleasure festivals like St Patrick’s Day and the Oktoberfest!

Tolerance and Harmony

If the governments of the past and the present had not introduced strong positive programmes to instil harmony amongst the people we would not be able to live side by side appreciating each other’s cultures and tolerating each other’s religion. People in Singapore accept and respect the different religions and traditions. This is what makes Singapore unique and wonderful as a place to live.

A Gourmet Paradise

You can enjoy many culinary pleasures in Singapore. Today, as Singapore has become more global, we have many good restaurants and cafés serving a variety of cuisines. Chinese, Malay, Indian, Eurasian, Thai, Vietnamese, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, English, Egyptian, Japanese, Indonesian, you name it and we have it! I love this!

Using English

I am deeply grateful that our leaders decided a long time ago that we should learn and use English as it is the language of international commerce. This has made it so easy for us to communicate with each other and with people from foreign countries. Using English as the main language in Singapore has put Singapore well ahead of many countries. Our students do well overseas and so do our business organisations. English has helped Singapore to prosper economically.

Organised and Efficient

When I meet expatriates working and living in Singapore, I always tell them that Singapore is the best place to be as it is organised and efficient. The utilities here are in good working order and most services are effectively provided. All this makes Singapore a comfortable and happy place to live.

Clean and Green

Singapore is a clean and green city. I love the tree lined streets which help to soften the environment. Against the towers of concrete and glass, the trees and shrubs add beauty and brighten the otherwise grey facades.

The Arts Scene

Over the years our government has spent money, introduced programmes, provided offices and organisations and built theatres, museums and concert halls to improve the Arts scene in Singapore. Today we have many more theatre productions, dance and opera shows, musicals and art shows. I am delighted to be able to choose the shows, the talks and forums I wish to attend and the exhibitions I wish to view. The mental stimulation, the pleasure and the enjoyment that all this gives the people are important for the development of a vibrant society.

Transport and Buildings

I love living in Singapore because of the airport, the underground transport system and the bus system. I love the shopping malls and how we can walk from one to the other so easily either above or below ground! One of the most spectacular changes in the last 50 years has been the skyline. Today we have many beautiful iconic buildings.

The Late Lee Kuan Yew

Finally Singapore would not be what it is today if not for the vision and work of the late Lee Kuan Yew. When he was Prime Minister of Singapore, some forty years ago, he pointed to a bare piece of land and said, “On this piece of land we will build a modern metropolis.” And indeed he did! The late Mr Lee introduced policies and programmes that have made Singapore a great place to live.

Today and Tomorrow

I consider myself fortunate to have witnessed and experienced many of the changes introduced in the last 50 years in Singapore which have contributed to the extensive development of our island. All these changes have made it a happy place for me. What is most important to me is that in the last 50 years I have had the privilege to live in the manner that I wanted, to do the things that I like and to pursue my goals freely.

I am confident that our lives will be enhanced and excellent in the future, judging from the number of programmes, like the Pioneer Generation Benefits and Medishield Life Policy that have been introduced in the last year alone. We will have a good and happy future. I love Singapore and I thank everyone who has made her what she is today and who has contributed much to make Singapore a happy place for me.


  1. Dear Zaibun,

    So grateful that you took time to pen down your thoughts so poignantly about Singapore!

    This is my 7th year as a Singaporean and I have so much to be thankful for. These are important reminders of everything wonderful about this city nation that is a cherished home to so many of us!

    The points you shared in your blog need to be shared with more of our young people. They should know what they have today is the fruit of significant and strong leadership and a lot of sacrifices over the last 50 years, allowing us to stand out on the world stage!

    Happy Birthday Singapore!



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