SDA releases election manifesto

The Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA) distributing party leaflets and Singapore flags during a walkabout at Sengkang Square on Aug 1, 2015.
The Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA) distributing party leaflets and Singapore flags during a walkabout at Sengkang Square on Aug 1, 2015.ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM

The Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA) has become the first political party to unveil its manifesto for the coming election, with the focus on building a "Singapore for Singaporeans".

The party covered a range of issues in its 2,300-word manifesto posted on its website on Thursday night. These include the 2013 Population White Paper, the Central Provident Fund (CPF) Minimum Sum scheme as well as the party's position on housing, healthcare and public transport.

One of the manifesto's key points is a call for more incentives and schemes for mothers-to-be.

"We need to breed and grow our own people, and not to 'import' as this may translate to conflicting values and beliefs; that instead of integrating into our culture, we lose our Singapore identity," it said.

The party also wants an end to the CPF Minimum Sum, pledging to fight to let people withdraw all their CPF monies when they want to at the withdrawal age of 55.

The Minimum Sum is the amount that must be set aside for retirement when a CPF member turns 55, with the money used to provide monthly payouts.

The SDA, led by chief Desmond Lim, has said that it will contest the six-member Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC in the coming polls widely expected to be held next month.

Mr Lim, who lost his electoral deposit in the 2013 by-election in Punggol East, is looking at improving the 35.21 per cent vote share it got there in the 2011 election, against a team led by Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean.

The People's Power Party said its election manifesto is ready "but we want to hear what the PM says in his National Day Rally speech first'', its chief Goh Meng Seng said. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will deliver the address tomorrow.

Reform Party secretary-general Kenneth Jeyaretnam said it will not release an election manifesto but will rely on the one printed on the fliers it has been distributing since last month. It includes making public flats freehold, putting a cap on foreign workers and implementing a minimum wage.

Others, like the National Solidarity Party, either did not want to give dates on when their election manifestos would be released or said that they were not ready yet.

Lim Yan Liang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 22, 2015, with the headline 'SDA releases election manifesto'. Print Edition | Subscribe