GE2015: 3,415 voted overseas along same lines as at home, except for Hougang

The votes cast at 10 oversea polling stations were counted in Singapore on Tuesday, Sept 15, 2015.
The votes cast at 10 oversea polling stations were counted in Singapore on Tuesday, Sept 15, 2015.ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM

SINGAPORE - More than 3,400 Singaporeans abroad cast their votes for the Sept 11 General Election and their voting patterns largely mirrored that of citizens here, except in single-seat Hougang.

Mr Lee Hong Chuang of the People's Action Party (PAP) got 22 - or almost 60 per cent - of the 37 votes cast for Hougang, which the Workers' Party (WP) had defended successfully.

The votes cast at 10 oversea polling stations were counted in Singapore on Tuesday, the Elections Department (ELD) said in a statement on Tuesday night.

 

It said 3,415 Singaporeans voted, out of the 4,868 who had registered as overseas electors.

There were 52 rejected votes.

In a close fight where the local votes are inconclusive, the result for an electoral division will be deferred until the oversea votes are counted.

But it was not the case this year, as all the winning margins in the 13 single-member constituencies (SMCs) and 16 group representation constituencies (GRCs) were clearly higher than the total oversea votes for each of the constituencies.

The PAP won 71.34 per cent of the valid oversea votes cast.

But these votes did not make a difference to its overall vote share, which - after taking into account the valid votes cast abroad - remains at 69.86 per cent.

But it was not the case this year as all the winning margins in the 13 single-member constituencies (SMCs) and 16 group representation constituencies (GRCs) were clearly higher than the total overseas votes for each of the constituencies.

Looking at oversea votes alone, two other hot SMCs besides Hougang also saw very narrow margins between the rivals.

In Punggol East SMC, PAP candidate Charles Chong got 20 votes against 17 by the WP's Lee Li Lian, who had failed to defend her seat.

And in Fengshan SMC, PAP candidate Cheryl Chan received 19 votes versus 18 by the WP's Dennis Tan.

Meanwhile for Aljunied GRC, which was won by the WP, the PAP scored 107 oversea votes, or 46.9 per cent, to the WP's 121.

Among the three-cornered fights, two candidates got nothing. They are independent candidate Samir Salim Neji in Bukit Batok SMC, and the National Solidarity Party's Cheo Chai Chen in MacPherson SMC.

Meanwhile, Ms Han Hui Hui, who contested Radin Mas SMC as an independent, got one vote.

The counting took place at the ELD Training Centre in Victoria Street. The total number of votes cast - including local, oversea and rejected votes - was 2.31 million, or 93.7 per cent of the registered electors.

The WP's Yee Jenn Jong, whose team lost in Marine Parade GRC, attended the counting session. He later posted on his Facebook page: "While we know that the number of overseas votes are too small to affect the outcome of the elections, making a trip (to the counting centre) is our gesture to acknowledge those who made the special effort to vote from afar."

waltsim@sph.com.sg