Following the announcement by the Singapore Government that the Polling Day for the General Elections 2011 will be held on Saturday, 7th May 2011, the Office of Academic Services (OAS) sent an email to all undergraduates stating that all exams which were to be held on this date would be postponed to 14th May. However, the OAS revoked this decision one day later and reverted to the original exam schedule.
Your Students’ Union had a meeting with the OAS on Thursday, 21st April to seek clarifications on this issue and voice suggestions that could help minimize the inconvenience to students who will be exercising their voting rights on Polling Day.
According to the OAS, the main reason why the University decided to override its initial announcement of a postponed exam date is because a substantial number of students had responded against the decision. The OAS gathered that some students have already made their vacation plans after 7th May and the delay would bring about great inconveniences to them. Admittedly, the OAS did not anticipate such strong responses when they first chose 14th May as the replacement date in the event that Polling Day coincides with NTU exams, which it unfortunately did.
The decision to hold the exams on 7th May (as originally scheduled) is final. Over 6,000 undergraduates would be sitting for their papers on that day and an estimated 80% of them are Singaporeans. In light of this, your Students’ Union engaged in talks with the OAS to provide additional shuttle bus services to help these students get to their polling stations quickly.
The frequencies of SBS bus services 179 and 199 will be increased on 7th May. More NTU-Pioneer MRT (Route D) Shuttle Buses will also be operating that day especially during the peak hours – between 1100hrs and 1500hrs – when the exams will be held.
In addition, your Students’ Union proposed to arrange for additional shuttle buses travelling to at least 4 key locations in Singapore, namely Jurong East MRT station (West), Yishun MRT station (North), Tampines MRT station (East) and Outram MRT station (Central). The OAS will be sending the Invitation to Quote (ITQ) to bus companies which provide shuttle services to the specified locations. A notification on the bus arrangements for Polling Day will be sent to all the undergraduates within this week.
We have received numerous suggestions on the locations of stops for shuttle buses that will facilitate travelling to various voting stations on Polling Day (7th May 2011). After compiling these feedback, your Students’ Union has proposed the following amendments to the routes in a discussion with the Office of Academic Services (OAS):
5 MRT stations – Tampines, Outram, Yishun, Ang Mo Kio and Choa Chu Kang – were chosen as the shuttle bus destinations. The inclusion of Ang Mo Kio (AMK) MRT Station will bring convenience to students who stay at the North-Central and North-Eastern regions. In place of the Jurong East MRT Station, which is already quite accessible considering its relatively short travel time from NTU, the Choa Chu Kang (CCK) stop will cater to students from both the Northern and Western regions of Singapore. The OAS will release more details on the transportation arrangements on 29th April.