Former foreign minister George Yeo, who led a People's Action Party (PAP) team that lost Aljunied GRC in the 2011 General Election, yesterday praised the PAP team that almost won the constituency back on Sept 11.
"It was very close, and I thought the team did a very good job in winning back a large part of the crowd," he told reporters.
This year's PAP team, led by veteran MP Yeo Guat Kwang with four new faces, came close to unseating the Workers' Party incumbents, scoring 49.04 per cent of the vote and losing by a mere 2,626 votes.
But Mr Yeo sidestepped the question of whether it would have been healthy for Singapore's political landscape had the PAP emerged victorious there, leaving the next Parliament with only one elected opposition MP.
He would say only: "When the pendulum swings too far to one extreme, then it tends to swing back to another extreme. It's better not to have wide amplitudes."
Mr Yeo yesterday witnessed the unveiling of a mural wall in Bedok Reservoir Park, where four graffitied panels of the Berlin Wall had been exhibited from 2010 to 2013.
On one side of the mural is a permanent graffiti art installation by German artists Niklas Bo Beckert and Dennis Kaun, who were responsible for the artwork on the Berlin Wall panels that were exhibited under a deal brokered by Mr Yeo.
On the other side is graffiti art done by students of the Temasek Polytechnic School of Design. This will be refreshed once a year.
Yesterday, Mr Yeo also said the PAP's landslide victory in General Election 2015 - it got 69.9 per cent of the popular vote, a 9.8 percentage-point swing from 60.1 per cent in 2011 - could be due to Singaporeans, having reflected on Cooling Off Day, worrying that the polls might yield "a very different Singapore".
"So everyone took two steps back and reflected, well, yes there are problems. But it is a wonderful country and we all like coming back here when we travel. This is home," he said. "Collectively, everyone came to that conclusion and contributed to this outcome."
He also said that while Singapore is susceptible to external pressures, "opportunities are boundless" if the country positions itself well.
But he would not say how the PAP should build on this resounding mandate over the next five years. He said: "I'm still a PAP member, but I'm an inactive member."