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GE2020

Ang Mo Kio's PAP incumbents plug estate plans, RP pledges more attention if elected

PAP slate offers resident-centred plans, including care for the aged, RP says its party members will be full-time MPs if elected

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Ng Ling Ling, who is on the PAP ticket, says she hopes to develop more social and healthcare programmes for residents.

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Reform Party's Noraini Yunus says she will work with the party's lawyers and economists to care for residents.

Singapore

PRIME Minister Lee Hsien Loong's People's Action Party (PAP) team for Ang Mo Kio GRC laid out its past projects and future plans for the estate, while their Reform Party (RP) opponents aired residents' grievances and promised to give more dedicated attention in the first series of constituency political broadcasts on Friday.

Leading the PAP's broadcast, in which all five of the GRC's candidates participated, Mr Lee started by situating constituency issues within the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. He noted the need to protect the health of Ang Mo Kio's many elderly residents in particular, as well as to provide economic support, with the Ang Mo Kio Town Council holding two community job fairs this month.

Nadia Ahmad Samdin, one of two first-time PAP candidates on the slate, spoke about the cause of "empowering every student to reach their full potential" and her own experiences as a student whose father - then the family's sole breadwinner - lost his job during the Sars crisis.

Incumbents Gan Thiam Poh and Darryl David spoke respectively about estate facilities for the elderly and infrastructure upgrading, including programmes for public housing, neighbourhoods and private estates.

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The other new candidate, Ng Ling Ling, said she would draw on her 16 years of experience in social services to develop more social and healthcare programmes for residents.

In the RP camp, two candidates spoke. Party chief Kenneth Jeyaretnam, who is serving a stay-home notice after returning to Singapore from the UK, did not make an appearance. Charles Yeo, a first-time candidate, and Noraini Yunus charged that the PAP incumbents have been inaccessible or unhelpful to residents; they also noted grievances heard on the ground, and pledged to give better support.

The RP had also contested Ang Mo Kio GRC in the last two GEs, but with a different slate. Its team for Ang Mo Kio GRC this time comprises the team fielded in West Coast GRC in GE2015, along with Mr Yeo. "You deserve full-time MPs devoted to your interests," he said, adding that residents whom the RP team met complained of not having seen their MP frequently.

He promised more frequent Meet-the-People sessions if the RP team is elected. Ms Noraini, also noting reports of ineffective help from MPs, said she looks forward to working with the RP's team of lawyers and economists to care for residents.

Mr Yeo also spoke in Mandarin on behalf of teammate and party chairman Andy Zhu, who is ill. Both in his speech and on behalf of Mr Zhu, he highlighted residents concerns, including ageing flats, unemployment, and the economic woes of small shopkeepers and stallholders.

He said that the RP will facilitate small business, and that he would meet resident stallholders to understand their concerns.

The constituency political broadcasts, introduced for this GE in place of physical rallies which have been disallowed due to Covid-19 safe-distancing measures, began on Friday and will continue nightly until Wednesday, in alphabetical order by constituency.

Each candidate for a single-member constituency gets three minutes of airtime; each team for a group representative constituency gets 12 minutes for a four-member GRC or 15 minutes for a five-member GRC, which can be allocated across one or more team members.

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