SDP introduces two more of its 11 candidates for GE2015, 7 left to go

Ms Jaslyn Go and Dr Paul Tambyah at a SDP press conference on Aug 26, 2015.
Ms Jaslyn Go and Dr Paul Tambyah at a SDP press conference on Aug 26, 2015.ST PHOTO: PEARL LEE

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) unveiled two more candidates on Wednesday (Aug 26), Ms Jaslyn Go and Dr Paul Tambyah.

At a press conference at its party headquarters in Yio Chu Kang, SDP chairman Jeffrey George introduced the two new candidates to the press, without revealing where they will be standing.

Ms Go, 42, sits on the SDP central executive committee and has previously been tipped to be the party's candidate in Yuhua. She joined the party in 2007.

Dr Tambyah, 50, has been active with the SDP before the 2011 General Election. The medical professor was a key part of the team of specialists who put together SDP's policies for healthcare and education. He became a SDP member recently.

"Many ask me: you have a relatively comfortable life, why do you get involved in politics? Because life can be better," he told the media.

He said he is concerned with healthcare and medical costs. "People have also brought up to us education and housing issues as those they are concerned about," he added.

Ms Go, who has two children aged 10 and 12, feels strongly about education issues.

"The education system in Singapore is really very stressful for our kids. Do we want our kids to grow up in this stressful environment? I want them to enjoy the process of learning, and not just for the ultimate goal of a degree or a diploma," said Ms Go, who is the sales director of a company she set up with her husband.

Referring to the Primary School Leaving Examination, she added: "Putting our kids at 12 to take such a major exam, you sometimes wonder if parents are the ones doing the exam."

Dr Tambyah said SDP advocates moving away from high-stakes exams at a young age. It is also supportive of implementing a minimum wage.

On immigration - which some analysts have identified as a potential hot issue in the coming election - Dr Tambyah said: "We are not against immigration, but we don't want people who use us as a stepping stone."

The party was first off the blocks to unveil its candidates for the coming polls following the dissolution of Parliament and issue of Writ of Election on Tuesday. The two who were introduced on Tuesday were healthcare administrator Chong Wai Fang, 45, and accounts manager Khung Wai Yeen, 34, a former Navy staff sergeant.

This means the SDP, which will contest Holland-Bukit Timah and Marsiling-Yew Tee GRCs, and the single-seat wards of Bukit Panjang, Bukit Batok and Yuhua, has revealed four of its 11 candidates.

The SDP, which launched its campaign in January, has said that it would champion issues relating to the cost of living, the Central Provident Fund (CPF) Minimum Sum, as well as the country's growing population.

The next general election will also be the first that Dr Chee is set to contest since 2001. He was unable to run in 2006 and 2011 as he was declared bankrupt after failing to pay $500,000 in damages for defaming then Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew and then Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong during the 2001 General Election. He was cleared of bankruptcy in 2012.

Most opposition parties have begun making formal introductions of their candidates following the issuing of the Writ of Election.

The Singapore People's Party was the first to begin confirming its line-up when Non-Constituency MP Lina Chiam confirmed the party's candidates for the single-seats of Hong Kah North, Mountbatten and Potong Pasir last Sunday.

On Tuesday, the Workers' Party introduced four candidates at its headquarters at Syed Alwi Road.