Singapore GE2020: SDP calls on voters to look at its policy proposals

It says it can be constructive, responsible opposition, urges focus on issues, pandemic

A Singapore Democratic Party supporter taking a wefie yesterday with party chief Chee Soon Juan, who is standing in Bukit Batok SMC, at Bukit Batok MRT station, where the party's candidates met to kick off their drive through all five constituencies
A Singapore Democratic Party supporter taking a wefie yesterday with party chief Chee Soon Juan, who is standing in Bukit Batok SMC, at Bukit Batok MRT station, where the party's candidates met to kick off their drive through all five constituencies they are contesting in.ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) chief Chee Soon Juan called on voters to look more closely at the party's policy proposals, saying the party can be a constructive and responsible opposition in Parliament.

Wrapping up his party's campaign in a speech during an online rally, Dr Chee said the party had put up various videos explaining its policies.

"We've taken the trouble to explain these things to you because we want to reason with you and not just spew empty rhetoric."

He added: "We know that you are looking for a responsible, intelligent and constructive opposition to represent you in Parliament.

"We are the opposition you've told us you wanted, the opposition that you've been looking for."

Dr Chee stressed that the party wanted to focus on the issues, with both him and party chairman Paul Tambyah accusing the PAP of mudslinging.

"For the final day, pay attention, tune out everything about PAP's personal attacks, focus on the issues," he said.

In his rally speech, Professor Tambyah said the party is focused on the Covid-19 crisis.

"Our entire campaign is focused on the post-Covid world. We recognise that the world has changed. And we cannot keep going on the way we have before. The key issues are jobs and support for the increasing population who are in their senior years," he said.

On top of the national policies the party is putting forward, he also stressed that the SDP was also paying attention to municipal matters.

And he stressed that it would be able to run a town council if elected.

REASON, NOT EMPTY RHETORIC

We've taken the trouble to explain these things to you because we want to reason with you and not just spew empty rhetoric. We know that you are looking for a responsible, intelligent and constructive opposition to represent you in Parliament.

We are the opposition you've told us you wanted, the opposition that you've been looking for.

DR CHEE SOON JUAN, secretary-general of the Singapore Democratic Party during his final rally speech.

"We will run the town councils ourselves without the additional cost of managing agents.

"We have heard many of the issues that concern residents on the ground, including fire safety, delayed lift upgrading, traffic hazards, noise pollution, lack of childcare and infant care, and limited access to public transport."

During the campaign, the party had been embroiled in several disputes with the PAP over claims it had made.

These included one plank of the SDP's "4 Yes 1 No" platform where it claimed the PAP was planning to raise the population to 10 million. The PAP said the claim was false.

Yesterday, the SDP capped off the campaign with a drive-about - with all 11 candidates on a bus as it went through the five constituencies being contested.

 
 
 

The party is contesting the same five areas it did in 2015 - Holland Bukit Timah GRC, Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC and the single seats of Bukit Panjang, Bukit Batok and Yuhua.

Unlike in 2015, the party is placing its party leaders in single seats, instead of having them lead a GRC team.

Reflecting on the past nine days, Prof Tambyah described the SDP campaign as "outstanding" and said the team has done well, especially given the circumstances imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said the party had received a warm reception from residents while on walkabouts.

"I really appreciate what the voters of Bukit Panjang have done in the past nine days. They have gone way beyond what we have experienced in the past 10 years in terms of opening their hearts, opening their homes to us.

"It's been a great experience… Whatever the outcome on Friday, I am going to enjoy working with them and the Holland-Bukit Timah team, which is, you know, just across the road."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 09, 2020, with the headline 'SDP calls on voters to look at its policy proposals'. Subscribe