SINGAPORE - Incidents such as the terrorist attack on a Christmas market in Berlin show that Singapore cannot be complacent, said Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob on Saturday (Dec 24).
Building strong community ties is important to guard against such tragedies, she added.
"Before we ever reach such a situation, if we ever do, we must be sure that we build a very strong foundation."
She was replying to a media query at a Christmas celebration for needy children from Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC, where she is a grassroots adviser.
Such celebrations, where families of all races take part, are key to fostering ties, she added. "These are the platforms that we must consciously create to develop strong community bonding. It is not possible to legislate harmony, but we can build harmony."
Now in its second year, the annual Toys Carnival @ Marsiling brought festive cheer to around 150 children on the morning of Christmas Eve, with magic performances, face painting, games and a photobooth where families could take photos together.
The children could also choose gifts from a selection including board games, toy cars and educational science kits, sponsored by investment firm ESW Manage.
Eight-year-old Nur Sahilah Md Husni chose a My First Chemistry Set, saying: "I want to learn science."
She has not studied the subject yet but will be encountering it next year when she starts Primary Three.