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Two new faces among WP's 2nd batch of 5 candidates for GE2020

WP 26 Jun crop.jpg
(clockwise from top left) Ron Tan Jun Yen, Raeesah Begum Farid Khan, Dennis Tan Lip Fong, Jamus Jerome Lim Chee Wui and Dylan Ng Foo Eng.

AMONG the Workers' Party's second batch of candidates introduced on Friday are two first-time candidates, one an economics professor and the other, a social activist.

The activist is Raeesah Khan, 26, founder of Reyna Movement and daughter of former presidential-election hopeful Farid Khan. She is WP's youngest candidate at the upcoming General Election.

Jamus Lim, an associate professor of economics at ESSEC Business School who has been spotted on walkabouts with WP members in Sengkang, is the other first-time candidate.

They were introduced by party chief Pritam Singh and party chairman Sylvia Lim at a virtual press conference on Friday.

Ms Raeesah said she has worked with people from all walks of life as a humanitarian and a women’s rights advocate; she said she is espeically passionate about workers' rights and has worked with migrant workers, underprivileged families and survivors of sexual abuse.

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“What we deserve is a country where the marginalised are cared for, including senior citizens and people with disabilities. We have a right to accessible housing for all, a low cost of living, to better protection for workers. It’s time to fight for such a country, for a Singapore that is fair and equitable,” she said.

Prof Lim said that if elected, he is hoping to raise questions about Singapore’s education system and economic structure in Parliament, as he asked what Singapore’s “focus on outcomes” has brought in terms of opportunities.

Noting that WP has always stressed its members are “loyal oppositions”, Prof Lim said: “What we want ultimately is the best for Singapore, and the way that we do that is by pushing the margins of what has not been asked and sometimes cannot even be imagined by the incumbent.”

The other candidates include former non-constituency MP Dennis Tan, who has confirmed he will contest in the Hougang single-seat ward. He previously contested in Fengshan, a Single Member Constituency, in the 2015 GE. Three years ago, he began assisting Hougang MP Png Eng Huat in estate and constituency matters.

“My years as NCMP have made me even more convinced that PAP’s super majority in Parliament is bad for Singapore and bad for Singaporeans,” he said, stressing the importance of “less groupthink” in Parliament, especially in a post-Covid-19 world.

Finance professional Dylan Ng, 44, who was  fielded in the party's team for Marine Parade Group Representation Constituency (GRC) in 2015, is also set to be fielded in this GE.

Through his grassroots work, Mr Ng said a key learning experience for him is treating all residents’ feedback with equal importance.

“Be mindful, do not overpromise, but reassure the residents that as a responsible party, we’re looking into all this feedback, and to the best of our capacity, address them,” he said.

The fifth candidate is Ron Tan, 35, who contested in Nee Soon GRC in 2015. He is working at the National University Health System, and had served as a legislative assistant to former party chief Low Thia Khiang from 2017.

“The best lesson I’ve learnt from him is that you have to be responsible to residents. You were elected to take on the responsibility to look after them, to manage the estate, to be the voice for them in Parliament and assist them in their day-to-day issues,” Mr Tan said.

Even if it is a simple matter like fixing a light bulb, he said Mr Low always personally followed up to ensure the issues are fixed, he said.

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