Paul Tambyah is new SDP chairman

The Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) has elected medical specialist Paul Tambyah as its new chairman.

He takes over from Dr Wong Souk Yee, who is now the party's assistant treasurer. The SDP said on its website yesterday that Professor Tambyah "comes into the position with strong support of party cadres", including Dr Wong.

She said: "I'm proud to support Paul's chairmanship and I'm sure the rest of my colleagues look forward to his leadership in the party."

Prof Tambyah, who was elected at the SDP's 18th ordinary party conference over the weekend, is a professor of medicine at the National University of Singapore and a senior infectious diseases consultant at the National University Hospital.

He said he hopes to see Singaporeans - in particular, academics, professionals and youth - become more involved in civil society and politics. "This is a particularly important time for our country when there are uncertainties about the economy and also serious questions about governance issues, including the elected presidency," he said.

"The SDP has never shied away from holding the Government accountable to the people and I am happy to be a part of the SDP's efforts for the good of Singaporeans."

He was part of the SDP team led by party chief Chee Soon Juan that contested Holland-Bukit Timah GRC in the 2015 General Election.

Dr Chee, who remains the party's secretary-general, told members at the party conference to keep their eyes on the build-up to the general election, said the SDP. "Even though the elections are still a couple of years away, we must continue our work to raise important issues and get the party ready for the next contest," Dr Chee said. A new addition to the central executive committee is Mr Damanhuri Abas, who was a candidate in Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC in the 2015 General Election.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 27, 2017, with the headline 'Paul Tambyah is new SDP chairman'. Print Edition | Subscribe