What's News: June 20, 2018



Bonus for civil servants

The Government will give 85,000 civil servants a mid-year bonus of half a month's pay in July. They will also receive a one-off lump sum payment of $300, with lower-wage staff getting $500. The same payment could also be given to other public sector employees.


Najib may face many charges

Malaysia is looking to bring charges of embezzlement and bribery with government money, among others, against former prime minister Najib Razak, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said yesterday. Tun Dr Mahathir said Malaysian investigators have an almost perfect case against the principal suspects involved in the 1MDB scandal, and described Datuk Seri Najib as playing a central role. 


White House defends policy

The White House has defended its hardline immigration policy at the US-Mexico border amid a furore over the separation of immigrant parents and children. The Trump administration has been criticised for separating nearly 2,000 children from their parents between mid-April and end-May. 


BJP ends Kashmir alliance

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has ended an uneasy alliance with the People's Democratic Party (PDP) in the state of Jammu and Kashmir as the law and order situation continues to deteriorate. The coalition had lasted for three years, but ended yesterday, with the withdrawal of support forcing the state Chief Minister and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti to resign. 


Football's unpredictability

Professional forecasters have trained their full analytical powers to predict who will win the World Cup. But if past forecasts are any guide, their guess is as good as my lunch buddies', says associate editor Vikram Khanna. 


Fake marriage scam busted

Two men hatched a plan to arrange sham marriages between Singaporean men and Vietnamese women. Mastermind Jeremy Tan Chin Hock and seven fake married couples were among the 17 people involved. Officials were tipped off about one of the couples. 


Worries over kids after crash

A trip to Malaysia at the Hari Raya long weekend ended in tragedy after a couple were killed and their two children left orphaned following a car accident in Johor. Relatives now worry about who will take care of the eight-year-old boy and his five-year-old sister.


Wealth of rich Asians rises

Wealth assets held by high-net-worth individuals in the Asia-Pacific region jumped almost 15 per cent to US$21.6 trillion (S$29.3 trillion) last year, according to a Capgemini SE report yesterday.

Accelerating economic growth and equity market rallies helped push the global total to a record US$70.2 trillion, the World Wealth Report showed. 


Start Rashford, urges analyst

The new-look England football team can go far at this World Cup, says Straits Times analyst Gerry Armstrong. But the Ulsterman feels that even though the Three Lions beat Tunisia 2-1 with a Harry Kane double, coach Gareth Southgate must start Marcus Rashford against Panama in place of Raheem Sterling, who was guilty of missing some gilt-edged chances.


50 vying for literature prize

First-time nominations dominated the shortlist of the Singapore Literature Prize. Of the 50 authors in the running for the 12 categories, 32 were first-timers, including Straits Times United States bureau chief Nirmal Ghosh for his non-fiction book Unquiet Kingdom, and Charmaine Leung for her memoir 17A Keong Saik Road.

Straits Times Digital


Big summit, tight timeline

It was challenging to host the Trump-Kim summit, when plans of the United States and North Korea were not clear until near the date. http://str.sg/ogTS


On track for rail boom

Zhengzhou, capital of a poor China province, is benefiting from a rail link to Europe, but competition is keen. http://str.sg/ogYy

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 20, 2018, with the headline 'What's News'. Print Edition | Subscribe