PUNGGOL EAST BY-ELECTION: THE OPPOSITION: SINGAPORE DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE

Knocking on doors to the last day

SINGAPORE Democratic Alliance candidate Desmond Lim was a man in a hurry yesterday as the campaign period drew to a close.

Accompanied by volunteers in green T-shirts, he was determined to complete visiting the remainder of the 127 blocks of Housing Board flats in the ward, before campaigning stops for Cooling-Off Day today.

"I should be able to cover all 10 blocks by tonight," said the 45-year-old telco engineer who is contesting an election for the fourth time since 2001.

For the past nine days in Punggol East, Mr Lim kept to a regular schedule.

In the morning, he would greet residents at one of the three LRT stations in the ward as they were leaving for work. Then he would go to the shopping malls to meet housewives and retirees before heading to HDB blocks to knock on doors till late into the night.

In between, he would take a break to record his online rally videos, produced on a shoe-string budget of less than $100 each and the centrepiece of his campaign.

The party produced 16 clips which have been viewed more than 180,000 times. Mr Lim hopes that the viewers include Punggol East voters who would be persuaded to support him.

Despite criticisms, he declared the videos a "great achievement".

He also said he ran a "gentleman's campaign". The hardest punch he threw was at the People's Action Party and Workers' Party for letting voters down despite being brand-name parties.

Today, he plans to cook all three meals for his wife, Madam Jolene Goh, and their 11-month-old son Cayzel, to make up for his time away from them at the hustings.

Tomorrow, he plans to visit polling stations throughout the day, but will return home in the evening to wait for the results with his family.

Asked what his plans would be if he loses for the fourth time, he said: "I am still not going away."

tohyc@sph.com.sg