Tan Jee Say forms new 'Singaporeans First' political party

Former presidential candidate Tan Jee Say (left) announcing the formation of a new political party called Singaporeans First. -- ST PHOTO: ANDREA ONG
Former presidential candidate Tan Jee Say (left) announcing the formation of a new political party called Singaporeans First. -- ST PHOTO: ANDREA ONG
(left to right) Founding members of Singaporeans First party Dr David Foo, Ms Fatimah Akhtar, Mr Tan Jee Say, Dr Ang Yong Guan, Mr Winston Lim, and Ms Jamie Lee. -- ST PHOTO: ANDREA ONG
(left to right) Founding members of Singaporeans First party Dr David Foo, Ms Fatimah Akhtar, Mr Tan Jee Say, Dr Ang Yong Guan, Mr Winston Lim, and Ms Jamie Lee. -- ST PHOTO: ANDREA ONG

Former presidential candidate Tan Jee Say announced on Sunday the formation of a new political party called Singaporeans First.

There are 11 founding members, among them architects, a retired army colonel and other professionals.

Another familiar face is psychiatrist Ang Yong Guan, who together with Mr Tan contested the 2011 General Election on the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) ticket.

At a press conference to unveil the new party and its logo, Mr Tan, 60, said his party will champion policies to build a fair society, strong families and an esteemed people, to create a "new narrative" for Singapore which focuses on not treating citizens as economic digits and offers a lot more social support and safety nets.

Dr Ang said the logo - a heart within a circle - symbolises that the party thinks with its heart.

The party outlined some of these new policies in its manifesto.

These include having a more progressive tax system, removing the Goods and Services Tax completely, and giving more support to local enterprises to grow, especially in the healthcare and education sectors.

It wants to also build a stronger social safety net through affordable universal health insurance, unemployment insurance and a state-provided old age pension that would be on top of the Central Provident Fund.

Mr Tan said the party would be registered after the press conference.

Mr Tan won 25 per cent of the vote in a four-way fight in the August 2011 presidential election. Both he and Dr Ang were on the SDP team that won 39.9 per cent of the vote in Holland-Bukit Timah GRC in the 2011 General Election.

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