Why It Matters

Every day on Page 2 of The Straits Times, reporters write about why certain news reports matter to readers. This is a weekly round-up of the columns.

The Home United Youth Football Academy in Mattar Road has been slapped with an injunction limiting the use of two of its 12 fields after residents complained about the noise. Reporter Chua Siang Yee said that how the parties resolve this issue is crucial as it will set the tone for future disputes, which will likely happen as urban spaces get denser. http://str.sg/4m8Q

Japan correspondent Walter Sim said the question of Emperor Akihito's abdication has been a divisive one in Japan, as left-leaning parties favour a permanent law and more discussion to update the archaic Imperial Household Law, while conservative elements prefer a one-time law that would not open the way to more changes in the rule book. http://str.sg/4msG

By 2019, children with special needs will have to attend school, but special education schools in Singapore are struggling with long waiting lists. Reporter Kok Xing Hui noted that schools need to build capacity to cope with greater demand, but parents will also have to buy into the "every school a good school" philosophy. http://str.sg/4mQA

Manpower correspondent Toh Yong Chuan said two recent labour disputes have highlighted a gap in the law that is supposed to protect foreign workers. This gap should be plugged because foreign workers are important to the economy, and local workers who face similar issues will also benefit from the protection. http://str.sg/4mpD

The Visit Asean@50 campaign aims to attract 121 million visitors this year. Reporter Jalelah Abu Baker noted that the region is one of the world's most tourism-dependent, with travel contributing 12.4 per cent of total gross domestic product. With an uncertain global outlook, promoting South-east Asia as a single destination could be a smart move. http://str.sg/4mSP

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 28, 2017, with the headline 'Why It Matters'. Print Edition | Subscribe