Government will meet citizens' needs, aspirations: Shanmugam

Beyond meeting the basic needs of its citizens, any honest government should also strive to fulfill their aspirations - but within practical constraints, said Law and Foreign Minister Mr K. Shanmugam.

Responding to a question on the Budget on the sidelines of a community event in Yishun this morning, the MP for Nee Soon GRC said the Government's way has been to look at the interests of all groups here before putting in place "policies that work for the entire country".

But the Government's approach means that compromises are made. "Every government in the world works within constraints: fiscal, and in our case, physical as well.

"We have to maximise the possibility of the aspirations and where the aspirations come up against fiscal constraints, or physical constraints...we have to then explain clearly what these constraints are."

"There has to be trade-offs but there must also be benefits," he said.

Today's event saw the launch of a one-stop elderly care centre in Yishun Street 11 where residents can work out on hydraulic machines, catch up over a game of mahjong or join a hobby group such as balloon-sculpting.

The Thye Hua Kwan Chong Pang Social Service Hub, at the void deck of Block 131, also has a call centre staffed by trained professionals where elderly residents can dial to seek assistance, get clarity on different aid schemes or simply for someone to talk to.