SINGAPORE: Minister for Manpower Josephine Teo will lead the People's Action Party (PAP) team contesting Jalan Besar GRC in the upcoming General Election.
The minister, who was previously a Member of Parliament for Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC, was at a walkabout at Beo Crescent Market & Food Centre on Monday (Jun 29), together with Senior Minister of State for Defence Heng Chee How, Ms Denise Phua and new prospective candidate Dr Wan Rizal Wan Zakariah.
They were distributing flyers and introducing themselves to residents and stall owners at the food centre.
Speaking to the media in a doorstop interview, Mrs Teo said that job security is a priority for the Jalan Besar team, as many of the residents in the area are middle-aged.
“If they faced retrenchment, it is important to help them move into new jobs. And to do that they would need new skills,” she said.
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If the team is given the opportunity to serve the residents, Mrs Teo added that they will be well-supported in education and skills-upgrading.
She emphasised that the upcoming election is not about the Jalan Besar team, but “the residents, their lives, their jobs, their future”.
“We hope they will give us a chance to make a difference in their lives.”
Mrs Teo will be succeeding Dr Lily Neo, whom she called “a role model”, in the Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng division.
Dr Neo and former anchor minister for Jalan Besar GRC Dr Yaacob Ibrahim made an appearance at the food centre after the walkabout.
While she has been serving in Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC since 2006, Mrs Teo said this is not her first time moving constituencies.
“The first ward I was in was Toa Payoh East. After (the 2011 General Election), I was asked to look after Bishan North, which has now become Marymount SMC.”
“I know that it takes years of interacting with residents to nurture relationships," she added. "What I want to do is first get to know residents of Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng."
“It will take time, but I hope we will develop relationships of mutual trust and support. This is my commitment.”