Straits Times: WP New Year party held at Umno House…

By T.F. HWANG


MR. WONG
… bid to form united front

THE Workers’ Party celebrated Chinese New Year two years ago at the premises of the Singapore Malay National Organisation (SMNO), formerly known as UMNO House, in Changi Road, the high court heard yesterday.

The party’s chairman, Mr. Wong Hong Toy, said this in reply to questions by Mr. G. Starforth Hill, defence counsel for Mr. Tay Boon Too, MP for Paya Lebar, in a defamation suit.

The Workers’ Party is suing Mr. Tay and also the Broadcasting Department (represented by Attorney-General Mr. Tan Boon Teik) over an alleged defamatory statement by Mr. Tay in an August 1972 PAP election rally in Lorong Tai Seng.

Mr. Tay was alleged in the statement of claim against him to have said that the plaintiff (the Workers’ Party) had received $600,000 “from Kuala Lumpur for the election campaign and that it had celebrated its anniversary at SMNO’s premises.”

Much of yesterday’s resumed hearing before Mr. Justice Chua was taken up by Mr. Hill’s cross-examination of Mr. Wong, who concluded his evidence-in-chief in the morning.

Mr. Wong agreed with Mr. Hill that the plaintiff’s Chinese New Year celebration party on March 12, 1972 had earlier been “publicised” and was open to members and supporters of the party on an admission-by-ticket basis.

He agreed that the celebration venue was UMNO House and that the Singapore Malay National Organisation was – till around 1967 when it adopted its present name – known previously as UMNO.

Before Singapore’s merger with Malaysia, […]

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