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Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan Director Chua Kee-Seng Talks about Kinmen as a Second Generation Singaporean Chinese

Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan Director Chua Kee-Seng Talks about Kinmen as a Second Generation Singaporean Chinese
November 10th, 2017
Reporter: Yang Shuei-Yong/ county government

Director of the Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan Chua Kee-Seng (who trace his roots to Qionglin, and is a second generation Singaporean) led a visitation group to Kinmen with an aim tohelppeople of Taiwanese descent in Singapore and Kinmen connect with each other. Chua Kee-Seng has strong nostalgic feelings towards his ancestry in Kinmen. Chua stated that Kinmen is close to China, the second largest economy in the world. In the past, Kinmen was at the frontline of wars. But today, with peaceful development across the Taiwan Strait, Kinmen has taken up a historic role of cross-strait cooperation and is ready to thrive by utilizing cross-strait exchange and its advantages.
Director Chua Kee-Seng is also the chairman and managing director of the Teckwah Industrial Corporation Limited. Chua graduated from the Politics Department of Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. Under his leadership, Teckwah developed from a small company into a large, professionally managed listed company. In 2013 Chua Kee-Seng honorably received the public service medal from the President. In 2014 he was appointed as Nominated Members of Parliament and actively expressed the voice of the Chinese community. As such, he is an influential figure both in politics and finance sector. Chua Kee-Seng stated that before returning to Kinmen, he had gained a wide understanding of Kinmen. Chua felt the warmth of the land and the people on his visit to Taiwan and Kinmen,especially at over 10 Kinmen associations across Taiwan where they received an enthusiastic welcome and hospitality. The most important part of this trip was to visit County Magistrate Chen and the county government, and Chua admired Magistrate Chen for his plan and vision for future development in Kinmen.
Chua Kee-Seng said that, like Singapore, Kinmen is a small island with a small population and no natural resources. Without any advantages, people in Kinmen and Singapore had to rely on hard work. For example, some people moved from Kinmen to Singapore for work as early as the 1860s. The Wu Jiang Fu Ji Miao (temple), which was the predecessor of Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan, was established in 1870, and has 140 years of history in serving the society and the community back in Kinmen, helping those in need, and passing down thier traditional virtues.
Chua Kee-Seng said, as an overseas Kinmen descendant, he has heard his father describe how he left Kinmen to work in the South Pacific and Singapore. On many occasions, Chua heard his father tell many stories about Kinmen, which gave him a different feeling and understanding towards Kinmen. His father’s generation regards Kinmen as home and their birth place. But the second generation and the third generation that were born and grew up in Singapore “don’tconsider Kinmen as home, but rather as their roots.” But their love for Kinmen is no less than that of their father’s generation.
His feelings toward Kinmen also include the development of Kinmen. Chua Kee-Seng said that Kinmen citizens in Singapore were gratified that 90% of Kinmen voters cast ‘no’ votes in the gambling referendum last month. He said that if the result was in favor of authorizing gambling, Kinmen’s traditional values would be changed, and would in turn affect how proud overseas Kinmen citizens would feel about their ancestral home.
Chua Kee-Seng pointed out bluntly that although introducing gambling has its advantages, but the bad outweighs the good. He proposed that Singapore did well with the gambling industry in these years partially because Singapore is an international city, and its conditions are different from Kinmen. It is known that Singapore paid a price for the development.
The third and fourth generation Singapore Kinmen citizens did not have the opportunity to hear Kinmen’s stories from their fathers like Chua did. Chu, as the director of the Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan, shares the same goal with other members, aiming to take the third and fourth generation back to Kinmen. Next month a youth group will bring members back to Kinmen in search of their roots, and join a trip held by the Education Department of the County Government to find their roots. The Singapore youth group will meet Kinmen citizens from Indonesia and Malaysia, who all support this meaningful activity.
In Singapore, there are many talented Kinmen citizens who hold important positions in politics and finance sector. As Chua Kee-Seng said, education is also something that the Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan values. Last year, the association established an education foundation with a capital of about NT$ 45 million. This foundation supports and encourages the children of Kinmen citizens in Singapore to work hard and study. In that way, they can obtain outstanding school performance and become useful people in society.
Finally, Chua Kee-Seng expressed gratitude to Magistrate Chen for personally hosting their tour group from Singapore Kim Mui Hoey Kuan, and for the government’s welcome. Chua wished a great prospect in all development projects under Magistrate Chen’s leadership. Finally, he said “My best wishes to the magistrate!” accompanied by loud cheers from all the members at the site. All attendees wished a better future for Kinmen!

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  • Date:2018-01-02