Singaporeans should extend appreciation to ‘tireless’ public transport workers: Madam Halimah

President Halimah Yacob encourages Singaporeans to show their support for the under-appreciated workers who keep the country’s public transport system running.
Facebook/ Halimah Yacob

President Halimah Yacob has called for Singaporeans to show their support and appreciation for the unsung heroes who keep Singapore’s public transport systems running.

On Wednesday (Mar 14), Madam Halimah made a trip to transport operator SMRT’s Bishan Depot to meet some of the public transport workers and gain an understanding of the kind of work that they do.

She was accompanied by Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan.

During her visit, Madam Halimah met with operations and maintenance staff as she learnt about how maintenance work is done.

On the same day, she wrote in a Facebook post that the visit gave her an opportunity to speak with some of the workers and to show her appreciation for their efforts in maintaining transport system operations.

Calling Singapore’s public transport system the “backbone of the nation”, Madam Halimah said that about five million commuter journeys are taken on public buses and trains daily.

“Supporting our public transport system are 21,000 public transport workers who work tirelessly around the clock to keep our buses and trains running every day,” she added.

“My admiration goes to our public transport workers who show such commitment and dedication to their work.”

Mr Khaw, in another Facebook post, wrote: “It was a great honour for the staff and a big boost to staff morale.”

Bishan Depot supports the North-South Line (NSL) and East-West Line (EWL), with the safety and reliability of the two lines hinging on the depot’s operations.

He said: “The ongoing re-signalling project has been challenging but the ECLO (Early Closure Late Opening) of the lines on weekends has been extremely useful to the maintenance crew.”

The ECLO plan takes effect from March to Apr 1, said Mr Khaw earlier this month.

He said that longer engineering hours allowed maintenance works to be intensified and have a direct impact on raising rail reliability.