SINGAPORE - People's Action Party (PAP) MP for Mountbatten Lim Biow Chuan will make his bid for a second term in the single-seat ward at the coming election.
Minister for Social and Family Development Tan Chuan-Jin announced this at a press conference at the party's Mountbatten branch office above the Old Airport Road food centre on Friday (Aug 21) morning.
"Biow Chuan has served the people of Mountbatten for nine years now. One of the areas he has been active in is walking the ground, working out issues and meeting people," said Mr Tan, who is the anchor minister for the neighbouring Marine Parade Group Representative Constituency (GRC).
"An MP's role does not only stop at the ground level - what he tries to do is to translate concerns of his residents. In parliament, he's always standing up and championing things.
"You may think the PAP is monolithic and there's a lot of group think, but what I've come to realise is that PM (Lee Hsien Loong) provides quite an amount of latitude and encourages us to speak our minds."
In a nod to Mr Lim's position as president of the Consumers Association of Singapore (Case), Mr Tan said his colleague's understanding of consumer matters meant that he understood the people's needs and how to meet them on a local level.
Mr Lim, 52, entered politics nearly a decade ago as part of the Marine Parade GRC team. He subsequently stood on his own in 2011 when Mountbatten was hived out as a Single Member Constituency (SMC).
Announcing a five-year plan for the constituency, Mr Lim said it was a work in progress but promised more covered linkways and improved transport.
He also spoke about his attention to detail on public transport issues after the last election and how he stood at bus stops in Mountbatten to ascertain the frequency of bus services.
Friday's announcement sets the stage for a rematch between Mr Lim and opposition politician Jeannette Chong-Aruldoss. Both lawyers by profession, the two fought in the 2011 election, which saw Mr Lim emerge victorious with a winning margin of 58.6 per cent.
This time, however, Mrs Chong-Aruldoss, 52, will be contesting under the banner of Mr Chiam See Tong's Singapore People's Party. She had left the National Solidarity Party (NSP) earlier this year after a failed bid to get elected as NSP president.
"I always welcome competition - the feedback I get is that people have not quite seen her (Mrs Chong-Aruldoss) on the ground. I've been here every week, four-five times a week in this constituency. Residents can see how much time we spend on promoting relationships between neighbours and residents, and racial harmony," he said.
"To me, being an MP is not just about saying things but to solve problems as well as find ways to make adjustments to policies without undermining their original intent."
Both Mountbatten and Potong Pasir SMCs were left intact when the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee released its report late last month. Instead, it was Joo Chiat SMC which was absorbed into Marine Parade GRC.
And Mrs Chong-Aruldoss wasted little time in stating her desire to return for another stab in the constituency.
"As I promised four years ago, I'll be back at the polls in GE 2015. I promise to work even harder to win the hearts and minds of Mountbatten," she wrote in a Facebook post on July 24.
There will be 16 GRCs and 13 SMCs in the coming election.
Including Mountbatten, the PAP has unveiled its candidates for eight SMCs so far. The others are Bukit Batok, Hong Kah North, Hougang, Pioneer, Potong Pasir, Radin Mas and Sengkang West.
The party's line-up for eight GRCs have also been unveiled: Ang Mo Kio, Bishan-Toa Payoh, Chua Chu Kang, Jalan Besar, Jurong, Sembawang, Tanjong Pagar and West Coast.