GE2015: NSP's Cheo Chai Chen slams WP as arrogant, expresses concern about its alleged financial lapses

NSP's Mr Cheo Chai Chen speaks to reporters at 89 Pipit Road before the start of his walkabout at the hawker centre and wet market.
NSP's Mr Cheo Chai Chen speaks to reporters at 89 Pipit Road before the start of his walkabout at the hawker centre and wet market.ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH

SINGAPORE - National Solidarity Party (NSP) candidate Cheo Chai Chen has hammered the Workers' Party for not ceding MacPherson, resulting in a three-cornered fight for the single-seat ward.

In fliers that he distributed on Friday, Mr Cheo wrote: "It is regretted, there is an arrogant opposition party does not want to give co-operation."

The 64-year-old is up against WP new face Bernard Chen, 29, and PAP incumbent Tin Pei Ling, 31.

In the flier, Mr Cheo also expressed concern about the Aljunied-Hougang-Punggol East Town Council issue.

He wrote: "Many of us have heard the ruling party highlight the shortcomings of an opposition party that defaulted its Town Council accounting policies.

"We are very concerned about this. If I am mandated by you, we will manage the Town Council on our own. We will not let the incident of 'TC general manager is also the boss of its contractor' to happen."

Speaking to reporters during a walkabout at a hawker centre in Pipit Road on Friday, Mr Cheo also said that the NSP did not decide to contest MacPherson SMC at the last minute.

"It was when Steve Chia pulled out, then the party fielded me," said Mr Cheo in Mandarin. He noted that the NSP had contested Marine Parade GRC in 2011, and he has been walking the ground since 2010.

The NSP had staked its claim to MacPherson when the ward was split from Marine Parade GRC this election. After initially agreeing to cede the ground to the WP, it later reversed its decision and fielded Mr Chia, only for him to pull out of the race altogether citing online abuse.

Mr Cheo, a former MP for Nee Soon Central from 1991 to 1997 when he was with the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP), also cited his experience as a plus. "I was an MP for longer than Ms Tin," the 64-year-old said.

He added: "My opponents are young. But this estate is full of old folks, whom I can engage with better."

He said that he hopes to improve life in the area for the elderly as well as security.

Over at Ghim Moh market, SDP candidates for Holland-Bukit Timah GRC met residents having breakfast there and distributed their party newspapers.

Medical professor Paul Tambyah, 50, compliance auditor Sidek Mallek, 55, and healthcare administrator Chong Wai Fung, 45, walked the ground first.

Party chief Chee Soon Juan arrived later, and quickly got to work shaking hands and introducing himself. "How are you aunties?" he asked.

The SDP is contesting the four-member group representation constituency against a PAP team led by Dr Vivian Balakrishnan.

Retired housewife Susan Kwek, 74, took a photo with Dr Tambyah. She said she identifies with the party's campaign themes, particularly with its plans to address the cost of living and healthcare issues.