Why avoid three-cornered contests?

With the publishing of the electoral boundaries, all political parties are no doubt gathering to determine their strategies for the upcoming general election ("16 GRCs, 13 single seats to pick 89 MPs in coming GE"; last Saturday).

One strategy that has been adopted in nearly every election has been the avoidance of three-cornered contests in certain constituencies.

Each political party stands for its own set of values and objectives. Just because the People's Action Party is dominant does not make the "opposition" a homogeneous party with uniform values, objectives and strategies.

In subscribing to the strategy of avoiding three-cornered fights, the parties are not only doing a disservice to themselves, but also insulting the electorate.

As was shown in the Punggol East by-election, voters are fully aware of the differences between each contesting party and will vote for the one they deem best able to serve them.

The strategy of avoiding three-cornered fights should, together with the by-election strategy, be consigned to the history books. Only then can the electorate claim to really have a say in who they want to represent them.

Tong Hsien-Hui