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We Love Bukit Gombak Too

Salam & Nasir at Blk 524 Bukit Batok St 52

Mohammad Fazlul, known affectionally as Salam, and Nasir Khan have been serving residents in Bukit Gombak since they first came to Singapore to work as estate cleaners 8 years ago.

Like most migrant workers, they came here to earn more money to support their families back home in Bangladesh.

They said they have both been fortunate to serve residents of Bukit Gombak who have been generous and kind. Residents would often greet them and ask if they have eaten. During festive occasions, they would also receive gifts of food and sometimes clothes.

Salam said they did not know about CCK Town’s Appreciate Our Cleaners Week held in April, hence, they were surprised to hear from residents that they were among the top 10 winning cleaners.

While they had no expectations of winning any prizes for doing their work, Nasir said such campaigns do help to make cleaners feel appreciated.


‘I Saw How Hard They Worked’

Lawrence Lau, the Goodview Park resident who nominated them, wrote in his nomination entry that he, like many others, didn’t realise how much hard work it takes to keep his estate clean.

It was only since he started working from home last year that he got to observe first-hand the long hours that cleaners like Salam and Nasir silently put in to keep the estates clean.

Therefore, he said CCK Town Council’s Appreciate Our Cleaners campaign was a “great and timely initiative to officially recognise the unsung heroes in our community”. He added it also gave him an opportunity to “express my gratitude and thank them for making our homes a nicer and cleaner place to live”.

Putting his money where his mouth is, Lawrence has asked the Town Council to give his share of the prize ($30 cash vouchers for each nomination) to both cleaners.

Lawrence said, not only did Salam and Nasir carry out their regular estate cleaning duties diligently, they also went out of their way to keep residents safe from Covid-19 by painstakingly disinfecting all the high-touch points in the public areas late into the evenings.

On top of that, he has witnessed them cleaning up the mess caused by rubbish chute or recycle bin fires.

Extending his gratitude to all the cleaners he may not have personally met or know, Lawrence said: “I would like to thank all cleaners in Singapore for ensuring the cleanliness of Singapore and the well-being of all Singaporeans.”

Scenic Little Guilin in Bukit Gombak is Nasir’s (left) & Salam’s favourite hang-out spot in the estate after work.

Happy Working in Beautiful Gombak

Even though there are some challenges in their jobs, like dealing with the occasional high-rise littering problems or discarded cigarette butts that cause rubbish chute fires, Salam and Nasir said they have had a good eight-year run serving Bukit Gombak.

Another plus of working in Bukit Gombak is the beautiful scenery the estate boasts. For both Nasir and Salam, Little Guilin is their favourite spot to hang out.

The serenity of the park draws them to relax there after work. They added it makes for a pretty background too for their daily chats with their families.

Salam, 42, is father to an 11-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son. Nasir, 35, has two sons, aged eight and nine.

In their free time, they enjoy cooking the Bangladeshi food to remind them of the taste of home and having a picnic (during non-pandemic times) at Little Guilin.

They said they are looking forward to sharing the news of their wins with their families after they receive them.