GE2020: PSP announces line-ups to contest in 4 GRCs, 5 SMCs; Tan Cheng Bock set to lead team in West Coast GRC
SINGAPORE: The Progress Singapore Party (PSP) on Friday (Jun 26) announced its line-ups of potential candidates to contest four Group Representation Constituencies (GRCs) and five Single Member Constituencies (SMCs) at the upcoming General Election.
PSP secretary-general Tan Cheng Bock made the announcement after the party unveiled its last slate of prospective candidates, bringing the total to 24.
PSP will contest in West Coast, Nee Soon, Tanjong Pagar, and Chua Chu Kang GRCs, as well as Hong Kah North, Pioneer, Yio Chu Kang, Kebun Baru and Marymount SMCs.
While the line-ups did not include PSP party member Lee Hsien Yang, the brother of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Dr Tan said that things could still change before Nomination Day on Tuesday.
"Let me remind you in politics change can happen ... you know candidates can be switched all around," Dr Tan told reporters in response to a question on whether Mr Lee could be fielded.
Dr Tan is likely to be part of a five-member team contesting West Coast GRC, together with Mr Jeffrey Khoo, Ms Hazel Poa, Mr Leong Mun Wai and Mr Nadarajah Loganathan.
Dr Tan was previously a Member of Parliament for Ayer Rajah for 26 years, when he was with the People's Action Party (PAP). The ward is now part of West Coast GRC.
The party will also contest Nee Soon GRC, Dr Tan said, adding that this team could include Mr Damien Tay, Mr Taufik Supan, Ms Kala Manickam, Mr S Nallakaruppan, and former Peoples' Voice member Brad Bowyer.
The party is also likely to contest in Tanjong Pagar GRC, where it could field Mr Michael Chua, Mr Harish Pillay, Ms Wendy Low, Mr Terence Soon, Mr Abas Kasmani.
Mr Francis Yuen, Dr Tan Meng Wah, Mr Choo Shaun Ming, Mr Abdul Rahman are likely to form the four-member team contesting Chua Chu Kang GRC.
The party could also field Ms Gigene Wong in Hong Kah North SMC, Mr Lim Cher Hong in Pioneer SMC, Ms Kayla Low in Yio Chu Kang SMC and Mr Kumaran Pillai in Kebun Baru SMC.
Dr Ang Yong Guan, a former member of the Singapore Democratic Party and Singaporeans First Party, is expected to contest in Marymount SMC.
PSP is likely to be the opposition party fielding the most number of candidates. Assistant secretary-general Mr Leong stressed that although the party is new, it started from a "very strong foundation".
"Although (PSP) is a new party, it is led and founded by Dr Tan Cheng Bock, who is already a very well-know politician and parliamentarian in Singapore. So the party comes with a lot of experience and assets brought to the party by Dr Tan," added Mr Leong.
"Because of Dr Tan's reputation, we have a lot of supporters, and many talented Singaporeans have stepped forward to allow us to put forward a bigger slate of candidates."
Speaking to the media, Mr Leong also addressed comments made by Reform Party (RP) chairman Andy Zhu, who accused PSP of not honouring a “gentleman’s agreement” between the two sides as the PSP is set to contest Yio Chu Kang SMC, a ward where Reform Party secretary-general Kenneth Jeyaretnam could contest.
The ward was carved out from Ang Mo Kio GRC, which RP contested in 2015. Mr Zhu claimed that the "rights to contest" should be awarded to RP.
READ: PSP keen on contesting West Coast, Tanjong Pagar, Chua Chu Kang GRCs and 5 SMCs: Tan Cheng Bock
However, Mr Leong rebuffed these comments and said that no agreement had been struck between both parties.
"I have been in direct contact with Kenneth Jeyaretnam right from the beginning. We have engaged in a very fruitful and frank discussion throughout. He's a very honourable man and we have exchanged a lot of ideas ... but (for) all the ideas, (we) need to get our individual party's CEC (central executive committee) to agree to," said Mr Leong.
"There's no agreement between the two parties. But there were a lot of ideas and principles (that) were discussed. So we were very surprised that they came out to say that there's an agreement and we are breaking the agreement."
Mr Leong also stressed that the PSP hopes that the RP would not attack the character of Dr Tan.
"But nevertheless, if there's a misunderstanding then I would like to apologise to Kenneth and RP for the misunderstanding ... PSP hopes that they will not take issue and attack Dr Tan directly, especially the honesty of Dr Tan, which is of no doubt in anybody's heart. Dr Tan is a man of integrity and character," Mr Leong added.