All NSF, excluding commando, naval divers, and support roles, will be scheduled for Basic Military Training (BMT) on Pulau Tekong followed by the removal of mono-intake system.
Nearly all NSFs went through BMT to graduate as Military servicemen, but some were posted to mono-intake batches whereby a different set of training will be conducted to get them ready for combat.
Singapore Infantry Regiment 3rd Battalion (3SIR) will no longer conduct mono-intake batches at Selarang Camp in Loyang.
The recruits which were planned to enroll there would instead attend a common nine-weeks BMT just like the rest of non-mono servicemen.
The decision of this move is due to the challenges facing Singapore’s dwindling demographic of enlistment pool.
Another reason is due to the “evolving new unconventional security threats”, such as terrorism, cyber attacks and disinformation campaigns, added Mr Ong.
“The future capability and effectiveness of the SAF will not be based on the quantity of people we have, but their quality and ability,” he added.
Recruits who then attend and graduate from command school will also have a higher chance of being posted back into their vocation, such as infantry, armour and guards formation.
This change does not affect the intakes for commandos and naval divers, and those in support vocations.
Mr Ong Ye Kung, Second Minister for Defence, said during the debate on MINDEF’s budget plans that “These NSFs will benefit from BMTC’s dedicated training experience, infrastructure and use of technology. Most importantly, they will share a common experience, within the unit, and within the SAF tribe,”.
The One-BMT programme has been successfully implemented since Nov 2017, and had integrated more than 2,500 NSFs since the trial in Aug 2016.