A Singapore Prize Winner Walks Away With S$56,000

singapore prize

A migrant worker at a heavy vehicle leasing company in Singapore won the grand prize of one and a half years worth of his salary in a game that resembled the hit reality show Squid Game. Players wore red tracksuit jackets and number tags, while game masters looked like characters from the show. In a room that looked like an office, the company organised a “Squid Game” competition, where employees took turns trying to snag money from a giant piggy bank. The first team to hit the target would win a cash prize.

The game was organised by Pollisum Engineering, a subsidiary of Pollisum Group, in conjunction with the National Kidney Foundation and its partners, The Straits Times reported. The prize money, which was donated by the companies, amounted to about S$80,000. The winner walked away with S$56,000, which the winner said was the equivalent of his annual salary.

A global environmental prize founded by Britain’s Prince William will hold its awards ceremony in Singapore this month. It is aimed at supporting innovative projects that tackle climate change and protect the planet. The winner of the 2023 Earthshot Prize will be given a US$1 million (S$1.67 million) award. The winner and finalists will be invited to Singapore for a week of engagements to promote their ideas.

The inaugural event was held in December last year, with a record number of applications from across the world. The prize was created to honour the late Christopher Bathurst KC, Viscount Bledisloe, an English barrister who practised at the commercial Bar in London and later developed a substantial practice in Southeast Asia, particularly Singapore. He was also a founder of Fountain Court Chambers and a cross-bench member of the House of Lords.

He died in 2009 at the age of 77. The prize was mooted by NUS Asia Research Institute distinguished fellow Kishore Mahbubani in a Straits Times column, and is backed by the NUS-Board of Governors and a number of sponsors.

This year, the contest was reformed to recognise works in each of Singapore’s four official languages – Chinese, English, Malay and Tamil – as well as a category for non-fiction. It was also made more competitive by offering 12 top prizes of up to $10,000, with fiction and poetry competing alongside each other for the first time.

In addition, four authors received the Readers’ Favourite awards based on public votes – with Ali bin Salim, Daryl Qilin Yam, Pan Zheng Lei (Pan Cheng Lui) and Rama Suresh winning S$1,000 each.

In partnership with the Singapore Book Council, the prize also awarded a separate SBC Achievement Award to literary pioneer Edwin Thumboo. The SBC Achievement Award is a new honour that recognises writers who have been shortlisted in two or more categories this year. This includes Clara Chow, who is the only writer to have been shortlisted in both the English fiction and English creative nonfiction categories this year, as well as the Chinese and Tamil writing categories.