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13th Rota Commander Course Officer Cadets Graduate to Greater Heights
Forty-three graduating officer cadets reached the end of their journey and took up the mantle of leadership as senior officers.

After 28 weeks of backbreaking training and extensive psychological conditioning, 43 Officer Cadets of the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) 13th Rota Commander Course (RCC) reaped their reward on 29 June 2016.

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The graduating cadets of the 13th RCC marching past the Civil Defence Academy Parade Square on 29 June 2016. PHOTO: Lee Zhen Huan

They marched with measured dignity and disciplined poise at their commissioning parade on the Civil Defence Academy (CDA) parade square with their heads held high.

Inspired to join the SCDF through an incident in which he saved a woman from drowning in a swimming pool in 2013, Captain (CPT) Koh Guan Chong, who was Best Cadet of the 13th RCC signed on with the SCDF in 2014.

He subsequently completed his university studies as a recipient of the Home Team Local Study Award.

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CPT Koh Guan Chong receiving the Golden Axe for Best Cadet from Guest-of-Honour Mr Patrick Tay, Member of Parliament for West Coast GRC, Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for Manpower and Member, and GPC for Home Affairs and Law. PHOTO: Lee Zhen Huan

“The course taught me the importance of teamwork, just like how a fire cannot be fought individually and has to be fought as a team, a Rota Commander has to command his rota with the help of all,” said CPT Koh, who was also Parade Commander for the 13th RCC Commissioning Parade.

Lieutenant (LTA) Lina Chan Kobayashi joined the National Civil Defence Cadet Corps ( NCDCC) in secondary school and was taught first aid and lifesaving skills that piqued her interest in a career with the SCDF.

However, it was when she experienced the aftershocks of the 2011 Fukushima earthquake and saw reports of the devastation while on holiday in Tokyo that her desire to join the Lifesaving Force was truly cemented.

“It gives me the peace of mind… knowing that I am equipped with the skills to help people,” she said.

LTA Rahul Swaminathan, a full-time National Serviceman (NSF) and Singapore Permanent Resident (PR), joined the SCDF as an Officer Cadet Trainee after his Basic Military Training and emerged second best in the cohort and Best in Theory.

His greatest takeaway from the experience was the bonds formed between him and his batch mates.

“I owe my success in training to my batch, my friends encouraged me and I encouraged them, we formed a great sense of cohesiveness,” he said.

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(Left to Right) CPT Koh Guan Chong, LTA Lina Chan Kobayashi and LTA Rahul Swaminathan, three of the 43 cadets from the graduating 13th RCC. PHOTO: Lee Zhen Huan

Guest-of-Honour Mr Patrick Tay, Member of Parliament for West Coast GRC, Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for Manpower and Member, and GPC for Home Affairs and Law offered warm congratulations to the cadets for their achievement and reminded them of their duty as Senior Officers.

“Know that you are now emplaced with the responsibility of protecting and saving lives and property… as part of the larger Home Team family, you will work with other Home Team colleagues to keep Singapore safe and secure,” he said.

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The 13th RCC graduating Officer Cadets tossing their peak caps after the commissioning parade, a time hallowed tradition that marks the beginning of their term as Senior Officers of the Singapore Civil Defence Force.PHOTO: Lee Zhen Huan

© 2019 Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore. All Rights Reserved.


  1. by Jaiesh Sachi
  2. 01 July 2016
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