SINGAPORE: Singapore's 12th Parliament has been prorogued.
It is a customary mid-term break for it to take stock of its work and let the government map out a new legislative programme.
When Parliament is prorogued, it means the end of a session of Parliament.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong had indicated his intention to prorogue Parliament as early as August last year, when he said the government will set out the next half-term, establish a fresh starting point for the rest of the term, and set new a direction for itself.
In a way, it is also a progress report for Mr Lee and his team, as they take stock of their work since GE 2011.
And the government has been busy in the past three years -- on policy matters such as housing, education and health care.
Moving forward, Mr Lee has said there will be a further re-balancing of Singapore's social policies to make sure the paths are open to help everyone level up and improve their quality of life.
Parliament has been prorogued 10 times since Singapore gained Independence in 1965.
In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Mr Lee said Singapore is in transition, and is adjusting to new domestic needs while it navigates an uncertain international environment.
He said Parliament has had vigorous debates in the past two-and-half years, on issues like ministerial salaries and the Population White Paper.
It also passed Budgets that include major economic and social policies, including the Pioneer Generation Package, GST Vouchers and Workfare enhancements.
Mr Lee said that parliamentary debates in Singapore are not as fiery as those in other countries, but he emphasised that the duty of government is to manage affairs responsibly and soberly, and not to create entertainment and excitement.
Parliament re-opens on May 16 with the President's Address, and Mr Lee said it will discuss strategies for creating a brighter future and a better Singapore for all. - CNA/de
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