SINGAPORE - The Workers' Party (WP)'s candidate Daniel Goh has accepted the landslide victory in favour of the People's Action Party (PAP) as a "ringing endorsement" of the ruling party.
The National University of Singapore sociology associate professor said in a Facebook post on Saturday that the results - the PAP won 83 of 89 seats contested, and 69.9 per cent of total votes - bore clear meaning.
"The people has spoken and the collective wisdom is always right," he said, noting that he was at peace when he found out that his team had lost. He was part of the four-man WP team contesting East Coast GRC, losing to the PAP team led by Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say which had 60.7 per cent of the vote.
He added: "It is a ringing endorsement of the PAP's programme of going back to its centre-left roots and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's leadership."
For him, to have Aljunied GRC and Hougang SMC returned to the WP was also a nod to its "brand of rational and responsible politics".
He said that the results also meant that the WP had to "work harder, and buck up, in both town management and Parliament; less egoism and opportunism, more depth, humility and courage, more listening and walking."
Dr Goh noted that a PAP supporter had written a long letter of encouragement to him, a gesture that had moved him.
Said Dr Goh: "My work is to continue this national service to build up the WP as a credible choice and voice to keep the iron in Singapore's veins.
"In the end all that matters is we found the time to love, and it is the time now, again, to do so with our families, friends and fellow countrymen and women. No politics of hate for me. Time for our thank you parade!"
Party mate Ms Lee Li Lian, who lost her set in Punggol East SMC to the PAP's Mr Charles Chong, has also confirmed that she will not be taking up the Non-Constituency Member of Parliament seat.
She said on her Facebook: "I respect the voters' decision and I should give this chance to my other WP colleagues. We really have some good people who deserves the slot."
The 37-year-old, while hoping to continue to walk the ground at Punggol East, added that she is mulling over whether to get a job next, or be a full-time mother to her 14-month-old daughter.
When asked by The Straits Times if she felt WP was discouraged by the results, she replied: "Perhaps disappointed. But we will come back stronger.
"We have done it before and we will do it again.
Ms Lee said she will contest Punggol East again "with the party's support, if Punggol East is still around".
But she added: "From experience, I think it might not be (around)."
On the way the results turned out, Ms Lee said: "We did have a handful of people coming up to tell us that the change was for the better, but perhaps the majority doesn't think that way...we have yet to analyse.
"We need some time to sit down and evaluate the national swing votes, and a lot of other things , so give us some time.
"It's only one day after the results."
The WP was the only opposition party to gain seats in Parliament, winning six seats.