PAP wins Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC with 64% of votes
The People’s Action Party team in Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC has defended its eastern stronghold against two contenders at the latest polls.
The PAP team, helmed by Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean, 65, won the five-member constituency with 64.15 per cent of the votes.
In 2015, the PAP won the constituency in a direct fight against the Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA), with a 72.89 per cent vote share.
Mr Teo’s team comprises Senior Minister of State for Transport and Communications and Information Janil Puthucheary, 47; and three new faces – the most of any PAP team this election – Desmond Tan Kok Ming, 50; Yeo Wan Ling, 44; and Mohamed Sharael Taha, 39.
The SDA got 23.67 per cent of the votes, with the third contender Peoples Voice (PV) getting the remaining 12.18 per cent.
The SDA team is led by party chief Desmond Lim Bak Chuan, 53, and his running mates – Harminder Pal Singh, 48, and Mr Abu Mohamed, 69. The team’s new faces are operations manager Kelvin Ong, 34, and electrical engineer Kuswadi Atnawi, 57.
The members in the PV team are Mr Gilbert Goh, 59; Lim Kay Cheow Jireh, 61, who also goes by the name Simon Lim; financial adviser Prabu Ramachandran, 32; lecturer Mohamed Nassir Ismail, 63; and pre-school educator Vigneswari V. Ramachandran, 38.
Candidates in PV will lose the election deposit of $13,500 each since the team did not get 12.5 per cent of the votes, the minimum required for parties to keep their deposits.
SDA chairman Desmond Lim Bak Chuan said that his party is proud of the result, adding that the vote share might have leaned more towards the SDA if it was in a direct fight with PAP.
Mr Lim said that the SDA will continue its outreach to Pasir Ris-Punggol residents.
“We continue to care and engage the residents and provide our community service to the senior citizens and vulnerable families.”
Over the campaigning period for this election, the SDA and PV had each said that their party presented a greater threat to the PAP’s dominance in the constituency.
SDA’s Mr Lim also said that his attempts to discuss with PV chief Lim Tean on how to avoid a three-way fight in Pasir Ris-Punggol was unsuccessful.
This election, Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC was the stage for the first multi-party fight in a GRC in 28 years.
With 166,556 voters, it has the second highest number of voters after Ang Mo Kio GRC which has 185,261 voters.
Pasir Ris, a mature town, is due for rejuvenation.
PAP’s Pasir Ris-Punggol manifesto, “Securing Our Home & Our Future Together” spells out what residents in the GRC can look forward to, including new jobs, amenities and other town rejuvenation works.
They include the new 50ha Punggol Digital District that will create 28,000 new jobs in fields such as cyber security and data analytics, as well as house the Singapore Institute of Technology’s new campus.
A new town centre will be built next to Pasir Ris MRT station by 2027, with a fully air-conditioned bus interchange.
A new polyclinic will be built with the growing population of older Singaporeans in mind, and some 2,000 flats will be launched in three to five years next to Pasir Ris Park.
Meanwhile, an extension of the future Cross Island Line will connect Pasir Ris to Punggol. Set to be completed by 2031, the extension will cut down travel time between Pasir Ris and Punggol.
Historically in multi-party fights, one party has lost its election deposit, which was why parties hoping to vie with PAP had tended to avoid them.
For example, three contenders in three SMCs – Radin Mas, MacPherson and Bukit Batok – in the last general election lost their $14,500 election deposit each for failing to get at least 12.5 per cent of the vote, the minimum required for candidates to keep their deposits.
Two out of four parties that vied for Marine Parade GRC in 1992 failed to get at least 12.5 per cent of the vote. - THE STRAITS TIMES