July 1, 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of the Singapore Armed Forces. Servicemen and other military personnel, from young men to older veterans, celebrated with a parade. With the celebration of the 50th SAF Day, regular Singaporeans remember their time in service.
Prepare the Next Generation
Singaporean parents or first generation permanent residents have to start explaining things to their children once they near the standard conscription age. To come up with a thorough explanation, here are important information you should remember.
Duty to the Nation
All strong male citizens, both native Singaporeans and second generation permanent residents, are required by law to participate in military training or National Service.
The Enlistment Act is the piece of legislation that requires the conscription of all male Singaporeans by the time they reach the age of 18. At 16 and a half years old, however, citizens and permanent residents must already register for National Service.
What to Expect?
The service lasts for two years, during which your children will serve in the National Service SAF, the Singapore Civil Defence Force or the Singapore Police Force. Upon finishing the two years, your child will be an Operationally Ready National Serviceman, or NSman.
End of Service
NSmen will continue to be of service until they reach 40 years of age. There are special conditions, however. NSmen who become officers or acquire and exhibit special skills will continue to serve until they reach 50 years of age.
Singapore Needs You
The Ministry of Defence outlined three reasons the National Service is a just cause. Firstly, Singapore cannot afford to maintain a large number of regular soldiers. Secondly, the nation’s economy cannot support a large fighting force of regulars since Singapore has a small population. Lastly, the nation should entrust its own defence to its own people.
As a parent, you have a duty to tell your children about National Service so they will understand and willingly serve with respect and love for the nation.