Overcrowding, broken furniture and bed bugs: Foreign students complain about S’pore hostels

Overcrowding, broken furniture and bed bugs: Foreign students complain about S’pore hostels


Thursday, Oct 24, 2013

A recent news report by a Taiwan media company highlighted the poor living conditions of foreign students who come to Singapore seeking work, and how this greatly differed from what they had been promised. In the video published by China Times which Stomp readers Derome and Steric alerted Stomp to, an 18-year-old Taiwanese student shares his experience about how he had come to Singapore to work and study English at the same time. Despite paying $280 for a room every month, he has to share the space with six to eight others. The tenants also have to take turns and wait to use a small bathroom.The only furniture in the room other than their bunk beds are a broken desk and a wardrobe so small that the student has to place his belongings in his luggage.

The student also mentioned old sheets and being bitten by bed bugs. The report stated that he was scratching his arms repeatedly throughout his interview.

He then added that he had been attracted by agency advertisements, which turned out to be different from the real thing. The agency website also failed to include photographs of the actual room he would be staying in.

It is also reported that students earn a monthly salary of about NT$30,000 ($S1,264), but are left with only NT$14,000 ($590) after the deduction agency fees and living expenses.

In a closing statement, the report said that one can only live in Singapore with a careful budget, and that those who have plans of working here should consider carefully so as to avoid being cheated.

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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