Channel NewsAsia: Workers’ Party’s slate of candidates better than in previous polls: Low Thia Khiang

SINGAPORE VOTES 2006

By Farah Abdul Rahim


Low Thia Khiang

SINGAPORE: The Workers’ Party has introduced its first three candidates ahead of the May 6th General Election.

The opposition party plans to contest 20 out of the 84 seats in parliament, and Secretary-General Low Thia Khiang says the party’s slate of candidates is the “most qualified” since the 1988 polls.

Dressed in their trademark blue tops, the Workers’ Party introduced on Friday their first batch of new faces – Sylvia Lim, a polytechnic lecturer, Eric Tan, a banker, and Yaw Shin Leong, an IT consultant.

The criteria for their selection are credibility, capability, character, passion and public-spiritedness.

The Workers’ Party’s Secretary-General also revealed that the party had the luxury of turning away potential candidates.

This time, it is fielding 20 candidates, 10 times more than in the previous election.

Despite fielding more candidates, the opposition party, which has just launched its election website, is realistic about its chances.

Mr Low said: “Politics is a process for the long haul, not for instant success especially in opposition and I told potential candidates frankly, if you think you will be elected this election, then frankly better join the PAP…but if you want to join WP, prepare to lose.”

Nevertheless, Mr Low says how the opposition fares at this election may well determine if the opposition has a role in Singapore.

Across the board, the opposition has said it may contest as many as 57 of the 84 seats, which means that the ruling People’s Action Party may not be returned to power on Nomination Day for the first time since 1988. – CNA/ch

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