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GE2020: PM Lee's PAP Ang Mo Kio team faces Reform Party challenge again
PRIME Minister Lee Hsien Loong and the rest of his five-member People’s Action Party (PAP) team in Ang Mo Kio GRC will face another contest from the Reform Party (RP) in the July 10 General Election (GE).
Mr Lee’s running mates are incumbents Gan Thiam Poh, 56, and Darryl David, 50, and first-time candidates Ng Ling Ling, a 48-year-old independent consultant at the Health Ministry's Office for Healthcare Transformation, and Nadia Ahmad Samdin, a 30-year-old associate director at TSMP Law Corporation.
RP's candidates include party chairman Andy Zhu, secretary-general Kenneth Jeyaretnam, criminal defence lawyer Charles Yeo, human resources practitioner Darren Soh and Noraini Bte Yunus, who works in telemarketing.
At a doorstop interview with media after the nominations were announced, Mr Lee also revealed that Intan Azura Mohktar and Ang Hin Kee are no longer standing for election and will be retiring as MPs.
Mr Lee said Ang Mo Kio GRC covers about two-thirds of the entire Ang Mo Kio town plus Fernvale, and to make a town council, it makes sense for Ang Mo Kio GRC to come together with Yio Chu Kang SMC (where PAP is fielding Yip Hon Weng) and Kebun Baru SMC (where incumbent MP Henry Kwek is contesting) to form one town council.
"Then we will have five of us plus two MPs altogether - seven MPs - covering the whole of Ang Mo Kio town which was the way it was earlier when Ang Mo Kio was first opened, all one town, and actually it was just one MP, Mr Yeo Toon Chia...
"Of course that depends on the PAP winning in Ang Mo Kio as well as in Kebun Baru and in Yio Chu Kang, so I hope that voters in Yio Chu Kang and Kebun Baru will give their support to Hon Weng and to Henry, and we will be able to work together closely after the elections."
Mr Lee added that he is happy that the Ang Mo Kio GRC is contested by RP, even if the latter’s leader, Kenneth Jeyaretnam, was unable to be present as he was serving his 14-day stay-home notice after visiting his son in the UK.
Asked if he has a target for this election’s vote share, especially after the last GE in 2015 when his team scored a resounding victory over RP in Ang Mo Kio GRC with 78.6 per cent of votes, Mr Lee replied: “I never have a numerical target for an election. We go in, we give it our all, we fight for every vote, and when you open the ballot boxes, you will know how the voters have decided. This time we are taking it very seriously; we are fighting for every vote.”
He declined to comment on the recent activity of his brother Lee Hsien Yang, saying: "He is entitled to speak like anybody else. Nowadays on social media, you can have five, six million voices on the Internet. The public will assess which ones are worth listening to, which ones make sense."
As for hot-button topics such as the balance between the local and foreign workforce as queried by a reporter, he said these are issues that can become “sensitive” and “very politicised” during election time, and his party will be discussing these issues over the next nine days during the campaign, through a series of straight talk sessions online.
In the RP’s thank-you speech, Mr Yeo said the party will fight for Singaporeans' right to access information that has been withheld from them, such as the amount Singapore has in its national reserves, the salaries of state-owned companies' heads such as Temasek's Ho Ching, Central Provident Fund returns, as well as the issue of the restoration of ageing HDB flats.
For Nomination Day developments and more on Singapore GE2020, go to bt.sg/ge2020