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Tan Cheng Bock “uninvited” from LNY party due to outdated invite list

The use of an outdated invite list resulted in former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock being invited to an upcoming Lunar New Year party at the Istana, and then told by the organisers later that the invitation had been sent by mistake. 

SINGAPORE: The use of an outdated invite list resulted in former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock being invited to an upcoming Lunar New Year party at the Istana, and then told by the organisers later that the invitation had been sent by mistake.

Dr Tan, a former Member of Parliament for Ayer Rajah Single Member Constituency, wrote on his Facebook page on Friday morning that he was "uninvited" last month from the party.

He said this happened after he had accepted the invitation to the party, which will be held on Sunday.

He said People's Association (PA) deputy chairman Lim Swee Say had called and emailed him to explain that there was a change in policy to "invite only those ex-advisers to grassroots organisations, from the immediate past General Election (2011)".

Dr Tan did not fit into this category as he stood down in 2006.

Responding to media queries, Mr Lim said: "We review and refresh the (invite) list periodically to enable a wider base of invitees to attend the reception.

"The most recent review was conducted a few months ago. Instead of inviting all ex-advisers to grassroots organisations repeatedly for 20, 30 years or even longer, we decided to limit the list to only ex-advisers who stood down in the immediate past General Election.

"It is most unfortunate that PA made the mistake of using the old list instead of the updated list."

He added that he had phoned Dr Tan and the other affected invitees personally to explain the mistake, and "followed up with personal emails to apologise again".

Mr Lim said that Dr Tan had graciously accepted the explanation.

"So I am surprised that he now brings this up publicly as an issue," Mr Lim added.  

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