Political Links: What's buzzing online in political news (July 10)

City Hall station was empty as services stopped during the disruption on July 7, 2015.
City Hall station was empty as services stopped during the disruption on July 7, 2015.PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

The ST Political Desk's round-up of what's buzzing online in political news.

Will the GE be in 2015?

Everyone's a pundit weighing in on the question of the moment: when the next General Election will be held. But the answer may finally be answered, as least partially, when Parliament sits on Monday. (order paper story)

Two Members of Parliament have filed questions asking if the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee has been formed. The convening of the committee, which reviews and redraws electoral boundaries, is the first sign of an approaching election. 

Meanwhile, some are wondering if the magic date will be September 12, 2015. The Online Citizen takes a systematic look at why it may or may not be. September 12 is the last weekend of the school holidays, and examination schedules in national schools rule out later weekends in September as well as October and November, it says. But are the periods after the National Day Rally speech on August 23, or during December, a possibility? Who knows?

Political scientist and author Derek da Cunha says only the Prime Minister, actually. A December election may be advantageous for the People's Action Party, he adds, but the reality remains: "When the GE takes place is entirely the PM's call."

All aboard

Three opposition parties - the Workers' Party, the Reform Party and the Singapore Democratic Party - have weighed in on Tuesday's MRT breakdown. The WP asks what such a major disruption of rail services means for the resilience of Singapore's public transport system, but also thanks SMRT workers for their hard work. The SDP questions whether Singapore's population is too large for its trains to handle, while the RP calls for greater accountability and a fresh committee of inquiry to be formed to look into this breakdown. 

WP Non-Constituency MP Gerald Giam, in fact, was caught in the chaos on his way to a WP headquarters meeting. His fellow party member Daniel Goh says Mr Giam arrived sheepishly late, but added on a more serious note: " Never imagined the day would come that I think of my public transport travels in Singapore in terms of luck, fortune and chance."

In her personal capacity, Jeannette Chong-Aruldoss of the Singapore People's Party (also formerly the National Solidarity Party's secretary-general) also urged the authorities to update commuters on what has been done to improve the MRT system since 2011. Read the Straits Times' round-up here.

New kid on the block

Speaking of opposition parties, there's a new one in town - the People's Power Party, officially registered as of Thursday according to its founder Goh Meng Seng. The opposition veteran tells The Straits Times that more of the party's plans and details will be revealed at a press conference to be held after Hari Raya Puasa.

In response to cynics who have asked whether it's all a plan to split the opposition vote, Mr Goh said on his Facebook page: "Don't be too presumptuous about such thing. A multi-party culture is good for democratic development for Singapore."