SINGAPORE - The Workers' Party (WP) is standing by its decision to contest in Marine Parade GRC and MacPherson SMC after its "concrete proposal" to avoid three-cornered fights with the National Solidarity Party (NSP) was rejected earlier this week, party chairman Sylvia Lim said on Friday.
Ms Lim confirmed a Straits Times report that the WP had offered to give up the single-seat ward in exchange for getting Marine Parade, and said her party had conveyed the plan to the NSP before the first round of opposition talks on Monday.
But the NSP rebuffed the proposal that same day, she added.
As such, "we felt on assessment that it would not be productive to attend the subsequent meeting that was held on Thursday," Ms Lim said.
She added that the WP would not be waiting for any further response from the NSP as "time is of the essence to us so we will have to go ahead with working (the ground) in both areas".
Ms Lim was speaking to reporters while the WP was selling its party newsletter, The Hammer, at the MacPherson Market and Food Centre in the single-member constituency.
Among the WP members and volunteers were Non-Constituency MP Yee Jenn Jong, who is expected to lead the WP's team in Marine Parade GRC, and lawyer Terence Tan, 43, who has been doing house visits in the five-member GRC with Mr Yee.
Medical social worker Frieda Chan, 39, who gave birth to a boy six months ago, was also present. The former candidate stood in Moulmein-Kallang GRC in 2011.
A number of new faces were also spotted. They include holding company chief executive Luke Koh, 40; wealth manager Dylan Ng, 40; corporate lawyer He Ting Ru, 32; and sales consultant Cheryl Denise Loh, 32.
People's Action Party (PAP) grassroots leaders and volunteers later arrived at the same market to give out Singapore flags ahead of National Day and ran into the WP team.
Both sides exchanged greetings and posed for photographs.
PAP MacPherson branch secretary Rosemary Lim said they were on their regular walkabout and carrying on with their work even though MP Tin Pei Ling, who gave birth to a boy on Wednesday, is on maternity leave.
"Pei Ling is always here meeting the residents," she said.
"We have been seeing more opposition parties these few weeks, but not so much before."
The WP team also went to the Geylang Serai Market to continue its newsletter sales today.