On 12 Jan, 55 Midshipmen from the 68th Midshipmen Course were commissioned as naval officers of the Republic of Singapore Navy by the President of the Republic of Singapore Dr Tony Tan at the 87/12 Officer Cadet Commissioning Parade, held at the SAF Training Institute – Military Institute.
President Tony Tan Keng Yam reviewed a commissioning parade at the SAFTI Military Institute. The parade marked the completion of 38 weeks of rigorous training at the Officer Cadet School. The challenging and realistic training conducted during the course tested and honed the officer cadets’ combat, planning and leadership skills. These newly commissioned officers will go on to assume command, instructional or staff appointments in the SAF.
Speaking at the parade, President Tan congratulated the graduates for successfully completing the Officer Cadet Course and reminded them that SAF is a National Service force and the challenges of commanding better educated and vocal soldiers. He said:
“As their commander, you must imbue in them a sense of purpose, and mould them into a cohesive fighting unit. Help them to understand the importance of their contributions to the defence of Singapore. They must feel that they have something precious worth defending and be united by the common goal of defending our home and our way of life.”
During his speech, President Tan also spoke to the graduands on leadership.
“As leaders, you will be responsible for the readiness, welfare, morale and discipline of the men and women under your command. Train them well and push them to do their best, but always have their well-being and safety at heart,” he added.
MID Toh Jing Yong was the recipient of the Sword-of-Honour, an award only given to the most outstanding officer cadet of each service. Despite being diagnosed with a suspected case of anemia and awarded a temporary Physical Employment Status (PES) of E9L9, this young naval officer was determined to serve his country.
“From young, I was taught to serve my country and community,” MID Toh shared.
Shortly after his enlistment as an Administrative Support Assistant in late 2011, this young naval officer requested for a medical review so that he could attend Basic Military Training (BMT). After close to a year of training, where he also was recognised as Best in Physical Training in BMT, he beamed with pride as his parents donned his new rank for him.
Having signed with the Navy during his BMT, MID Toh hopes to serve the nation to the best of his abilities and enjoy the adventure which the career of a naval officer can bring him.
“I hope to be able to enjoy the dynamism and challenges of a navy career,” laughed MID Toh.
Also present at the parade were Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Members of Parliament, senior Ministry of Defence officials and SAF officers, as well as families and friends of the newly commissioned officers.
Naval Today Staff, January 15, 2013; Image: Singapore MoD