Dear Residents of the South East District,

We have just completed our 54th National Day Celebrations as we commemorate Singapore's Bicentennial. Three traits have featured in our DNA as a society in our journey to nationhood: multiculturalism, openness and self-determination. 

While multiculturalism and diversity are strengths, if not well managed, they may present serious challenges to any society. Singapore is no exception as evident in the racial riots of the 1960s. As such, we must not take for granted the harmony that we have built over the last 50 years. Each generation must recognise that Singapore’s racial and religious harmony is a work in progress, a precious jewel on which they must invest time and effort to maintain its shine.

Here in South East District, we recognise that the community is a microcosm of the larger society. As such, we must do our part in maintaining harmony at the community level and engage diversity community groups and facilitate these engagements. South East CDC has been intimately involved in this process through our signature programmes, such as Common Senses for Common Spaces (CSCS), Exploration Into Faith (EIF), and Celebrating Our Festivals (COF).

We reach out to the young through our Racial Harmony Youth Ambassadors (RHYA) programme to ensure that such consciousness is rooted early in our young. We also acknowledge that there are new naturalised citizens and permanent residents who come from different social backgrounds and practices living among us who must appreciate the significance of multiculturalism in Singapore. Thus, we recently co-sponsored a new programme – Faithful Footprints – an interfaith trail to learn the significance of interfaith harmony and co-existence in our early history (up to the present) in al small geographical area within the city centre.

We invite our residents to walk this journey with us and participate in these programmes as we play our part in maintaining religious and racial harmony in South East District. I look forward to seeing you soon in these programmes.

Dr Maliki Osman
Mayor, South East District
Grassroots Adviser to East Coast GRC GROs
And MP for East Coast GRC