125 appointed SAF senior military experts; largest cohort to date

SINGAPORE - A total of 125 servicemen and servicewomen from the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) were appointed senior military experts in a ceremony on Tuesday night - the largest graduating cohort to date since the first ceremony in 2011.

The rise in numbers comes at a time where there is a greater need for military experts as the SAF becomes more technologically advanced.

The specialised corps of the is made up of experts in a dozen fields such as in engineering, intelligence and military medicine. They are deployed in operational roles alongside their officer and warrant officer counterparts.

The ceremony marks the end of the Military Domain Experts Course, which develops and hones the military experts' military knowledge, leadership and specialised skills.Three were presented with the rank of ME5, while the other 122 were appointed as ME4s.

Minister of State for Defence Maliki Osman, who officiated the ceremony at the Safti Military Institute, said the depth of the knowledge and expertise of the SAF's soldiers is crucial for Singapore's defence.

"As the threats and challenges we face become increasingly complex, we will look to you, our military experts, to bring in a constant flow of new and better ideas to ready the SAF for the future,"said Dr Maliki, who is also Minister of State for National Development.

For ME4Pang Kee Hwee, 42, who received the Sword of Honour for being the best performer in the course, the appointment has allowed him to further his studies in aerospace engineering .

"It gives me the opportunity to break the ceiling and to take on greater responsibilities," said ME4 Pang, who is currently the command chief of the Air Force's 805 squadron. "It also lets us speak on the same level with other officers and military experts, as we go through the same kinds of courses together so we can move and work better together."

lesterh@sph.com.sg