Student ambassadors to play role of local guides for foreign guests in Singapore for treaty signing

Students in the rotunda arbitration room, also known as the Cavenagh room, during a tour led by Mr Han Kok Juan (centre), chairman of the Singapore Convention Signing Ceremony and Conference Organising Committee, at the Maxwell Chambers as part of th
Students in the rotunda arbitration room, also known as the Cavenagh room, during a tour led by Mr Han Kok Juan (centre), chairman of the Singapore Convention Signing Ceremony and Conference Organising Committee, at the Maxwell Chambers as part of their training as Singapore Convention Youth Ambassadors on June 18, 2019.ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

SINGAPORE - Students will play the role of youth ambassadors in August, taking foreign guests in the Republic for the signing of an international treaty around Singapore and through its history and heritage.

About 700 international delegates are expected to witness the signing of the Singapore Convention on Mediation on Aug 7 at the Shangri-La Hotel.

Besides hosting guided tours to places such as the Singapore City Gallery and Gardens by the Bay, the students will also share Singapore's history, heritage and approach to nation building, in the areas of rule of law, urban planning and greening.

The Republic had played an active role in negotiating the United Nations Convention on International Settlement Agreements Resulting from Mediation, which is now known as the Singapore Convention on Mediation.

The convention will facilitate the enforcement of mediated settlement agreements and help to promote international trade and commerce.

Guests here for the signing of the treaty are also expected to visit the newly refurbished Maxwell Chambers Suites when it opens its doors on Aug 8.

Housing at least 11 international institutions and 20 disputes chambers and practices from 11 countries, the Maxwell Chambers Suites was set up to meet growing demand for dispute resolution service providers.

The Law Ministry said the 50 student ambassadors will be trained under a new Singapore Convention Youth Involvement Programme, which will provide them with a deeper appreciation of the different aspects of Singapore's history and nation-building efforts.

Speaking at the launch of the programme on Tuesday (June 18), Mr Han Kok Juan, chairman of the Singapore Convention Signing Ceremony and Conference Organising Committee, said the students will gain international exposure as well as interact with international leaders.

Mr Han, who is also the deputy secretary of MinLaw, added: "We would like to involve younger Singaporeans in this important milestone in Singapore's history, to give them the opportunity of international exposure and to gain confidence to think and operate globally.

 
 
 

"We hope that this can also inspire them to think about how they themselves can contribute to Singapore in future."

The students, aged between 17 and 18, are from 13 institutions and were selected after an interview.

To prepare for their roles, they will undergo a five-day training programme jointly organised by different agencies, including the Ministry of Law and the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Singapore.

Second-year National Junior College student Josh Abraham Jacob, 18, was taken on a tour of Maxwell Chambers on Tuesday with the other students selected for the programme.

"I didn't know a lot about the rule of law and the significance of the Maxwell Chambers before the tour," said Josh, who added that he was glad to have picked up some knowledge.

Second-year Eunoia Junior College student Ong Chong Yu said the significance of the event has not escaped the students.

The 18-year-old added: "It's a large-scale event that will expose us to the real world and how Singapore hosts such major international events.

"So being able to be a part of this is really an honour."