NSP gives up Marine Parade and MacPherson to avoid multi-cornered fight
Avoiding more three-cornered fights, the National Solidarity Party (NSP) announced that they will not be contesting in Marine Parade group representation constituency (GRC) and MacPherson single member constituency (SMC) at the upcoming general elections.
This means that Workers' Party will be the only opposition fighting the People's Action Party (PAP) at both these constituencies.
NSP's secretary-general Hazel Poa said: "Multi-cornered contests are likely to dilute opposition votes and reduce the chances of a more diverse Parliament. We trust that the WP will send in good candidates and give voters in these two constituencies a choice."
She also added that it was a "difficult decision" for NSP, which contested in Marine Parade GRC in the 2011 elections.
The PAP had won 56.7 per cent of the vote against the NSP four years ago - and this was the ruling party's second closest shave in a GRC after East Coast, which was contested by the WP in 2011.
Ms Poa said: "We recognise the voters' desire for greater opposition representation in Parliament, where opposition parties got only 10 per cent of the seats despite garnering 40 per cent of popular votes."
NSP will now contest in Tampines and Sembawang GRCs and Pioneer SMC at the next general election.
Ms Poa also thanked the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) for withdrawing from Sembawang GRC, where it had contested in 2006 and 2011.
She said the SDP's voluntary withdrawal was done "in the interest of opposition unity" and paved the way for more compromises among the opposition parties.
In contrast, she made some barbed comments about the WP.
Noting how the WP was not present at a second meeting among opposition parties last Thursday (Aug 8), Ms Poa said the party wrote WP an e-mail to inform them of its decision not to contest in Marine Parade.
After not receiving a response from the WP, the NSP decided to make the announcement themselves.
As of now, it is likely that there won't be any multi-cornered fights in the upcoming general elections.
Singaporeans First (SingFirst), a new political party led former presidential candidate, Mr Tan Jee Say, said in a Facebook post that they have withdrawn their interest from Ang Mo Kio GRC, helmed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
Reform Party is now the only party interested in Ang Mo Kio.
Meanwhile, SingFirst will be contesting in the Tanjong Pagar and Jurong GRCs.