Singapore

Politicians spend day meeting residents

PAP and opposition party members resume ground activities in phase two

Residents buying groceries at markets and eating at hawker centres and coffee shops yesterday were greeted by politicians bearing leaflets, in anticipation that the general election would soon be called.

Labour chief Ng Chee Meng, who is tipped to helm the People's Action Party (PAP) team in the new Sengkang GRC, posted photos of himself meeting residents in the Compassvale area.

He said he had restarted community walkabouts over the past couple of days and was glad to be out and about as Singapore enters phase two of reopening.

"I am able to check in with residents to see how everyone is coping. I look forward to seeing more residents in the coming weeks," said Mr Ng, an MP for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC.

In Nee Soon GRC, MP Louis Ng chatted with residents while out for a jog at Yishun Neighbourhood Park, while Associate Professor Faishal Ibrahim and Ms Lee Bee Wah went on walkabouts in their wards.

Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam visited two neighbourhoods with two potential candidates - Ms Carrie Tan in Chong Pang City neighbourhood centre and Mr Derrick Goh in Yishun Link. Ms Tan, 37, is the founding executive director of charity Daughters Of Tomorrow, while Mr Goh, 51, is managing director and head of group audit at DBS Bank.

Asked about their presence, Mr Shanmugam said: "I've been seen on the ground with lots of people...

"Derrick has been serving in my branch for many years. He has often accompanied me for some years now. Carrie has been a community organiser, she has been doing work and has also come around. So it's not new."

As the minister left Chong Pang, members of the opposition Progress Singapore Party (PSP) led by former PAP MP and 2011 presidential election candidate Tan Cheng Bock turned up to meet residents.

Mr Shanmugam said he welcomed a contest from the PSP: "I met Dr Tan last year or the year before and I told him, come more often. Contest is good, gives people a choice. We've been on the ground, we offer a choice, voters decide."

Dr Tan said he practised as a doctor "many, many years ago" in Chong Pang.

"Although we were all masked, I think many of them (residents) could still recognise me," he said. He added with a laugh: "And I like Shanmugam, tell him okay?"

PSP members were also at Shunfu Mart Food Centre in Marymount, which has been carved out of Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC. Potential candidate Ang Yong Guan, 65, was with volunteers and party members, and ran into members of the Democratic Progressive Party, fist bumping with its secretary-general Mohamad Hamim Aliyas, 57.

Dr Ang, who contested the 2011 election under the Singapore Democratic Party and in 2015 under Singaporeans First, did not confirm if he will be fielded in the seat.

In Marine Parade GRC, Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong went to the Marine Parade Central market, where he bought vegetables and fish and interacted with stallholders. He was with potential candidate Tan See Leng, 55, former chief executive of IHH Healthcare.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING: FABIAN KOH

Singapore Politics