The report on Ministers Shanmugam and Vivian Balakrishnan’s Ridout Road bungalow rentals is out. Apparently CPIB and SM Teo Chee Hean finds no corruption or wrongdoing by the ministers. No surprise to us there. However, in the report, what is more astounding is the amount of money spent by SLA to “ensure that the property is habitable”.
According to the reports, SLA also undertook essential repair works for the 26 Ridout Road property, which cost $515,400. The total cost of essential repair works to restore 31 Ridout Road State property was $570,500.
SLA did not maintain the house before the ministers moved in, leading repair costs to snowball.
They note that the properties were empty before the ministers moved in. So they had plenty of time to do repair works. If they were to consistently maintain the house, the costs would have been less over time, instead of waiting to do such elaborate renovations.
Will SLA do the same for other tenants who are not ministers?
This is the bigger question. Why did SLA have to bear such costs? These funds come from taxpayers, we deserve to know why such money was spent.