SINGAPORE: The People’s Action Party’s (PAP) Sitoh Yih Pin has retained his Potong Pasir seat with 60.69 per cent of the vote against the 39.31 per cent garnered by the Singapore People’s Party’s (SPP) Jose Raymond.
Mr Sitoh got 11,232 votes and Mr Raymond 7,275 votes, with 278 rejected ballots. Mr Sitoh’s margin of victory is narrower by nearly six percentage points than in the 2015 General Election.
This is his fifth time running in the Single Member Constituency, and the first time he is up against an opponent who is not from the Chiam family.
Mr Sitoh thanked Potong Pasir voters for giving him the mandate and for letting him serve them for another five years in a Facebook video.
"Everything that we have promised you in our manifesto, we will always deliver, and we will in fact deliver much more than what we have printed in the manifesto's five-year plan," he said.
Wishing Mr Sitoh well, Mr Raymond thanked Potong Pasir voters in a Facebook post almost immediately after the results were announced.
"Your warmth throughout the campaign motivated my team and myself to keep soldiering on, despite knowing the odds were always stacked up against us," he wrote.
"But we did this because we wanted to show you that there's always alternatives, and we can all put different ideas to the table."
Mr Raymond, 48, became SPP chairman last November, taking over from Mrs Lina Chiam, the wife of opposition stalwart Chiam See Tong.
A first-time candidate, he had appealed to Singaporeans to vote for a “new dawn” with more political competition.
On his part, Mr Sitoh, 56, had promised to take care of “three generations” of residents in Potong Pasir.
Potong Pasir SMC was, for nearly 30 years, served by Mr Chiam. One of the longest-serving opposition MPs in Singapore, he held on to Potong Pasir for six terms from 1984 to 2011.
In the 2011 General Election, Mr Chiam headed a team to contest Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC, while Mrs Chiam ran in Potong Pasir.
She narrowly lost to Mr Sitoh in 2011, with 49.64 per cent of the vote. In 2015, Mr Sitoh widened the gap, winning 66.39 per cent of the votes cast.
While Potong Pasir’s electoral boundaries were changed for the first time in three decades this time, it remains Singapore’s smallest constituency with 19,740 voters.
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