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Originally posted by sky_net at 2007-6-30 15:49
As of 2006, 75.2% of Singapore's population are Chinese. Singapore is far away from China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan, and yet there are so many Chinese in Singapore. Mandarin Chinese is even an ...
The national language of Singapore is Malay for historical reasons, and it is used in the national anthem, "Majulah Singapura".
The official languages are English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil.
English has been promoted as the country's language of administration since independence, and it is spoken by the majority of the population, especially the young. Public signs and official publications are in English, although there are usually translated versions in the other official languages.
The English used is primarily British English, with some American English influences. The local colloquial dialect of English is Singlish, which has many creole-like characteristics, having incorporated vocabulary and grammar from various Chinese dialects, Malay, and Indian languages. Singlish is spoken commonly on the streets, but the government frowns upon its use in official contexts. The use of English became widespread in Singapore after it was implemented as a first language medium in the education system, and English is the most common language in Singaporean literature.
The total population living in Singapore as of June 2006 is about 4.5 million, official demographic breakdowns and statistical analysis are only released for the 3.6 million who are Singaporean citizens and permanent residents (termed 'Singapore Residents').
Singapore is a republic with a Westminster system of unicameral parliamentary government representing different constituencies. The bulk of the executive powers rests with the Cabinet, headed by the Prime Minister. The office of President of Singapore, historically a ceremonial one, was granted some veto powers as of 1991 for a few key decisions such as the use of the national reserves and the appointment of judiciary positions. Although the position is to be elected by popular vote, only the 1993 election has been contested to date. The legislative branch of government is the Parliament.
Parliamentary elections in Singapore are plurality-based for group representation constituencies since the Parliamentary Elections Act was modified in 1991.
The Economist Intelligence Unit lists Singapore as a country with a "hybrid" system comprised of democratic and authoritarian elements.
Singapore consists of 63 islands, including the main island itself.