The Workers’ Party’s (WP) Pritam Singh appears to be the favourite to succeed Low Thia Khiang as the party’s secretary-general when members of the only opposition party in Parliament elect their new party leader on 8 April, this year.
Veteran politician Low Thia Khiang has served as the WP’s secretary-general since 2001. Low confirmed at the party’s 60th anniversary dinner last November that he will not contest the next election to “make way for new blood”.
Last year, Aljunied GRC MP Pritam Singh was named assistant secretary-general of the party – a post that had been vacant since 2006. Analysts and reporters speculated that the move marks Singh as the frontrunner for taking over the party’s reins once Low steps down as party chief.
In recent weeks, a political observer Lam Peng Er suggested that WP Non-Constituency Member of Parliament (NCMP) Daniel Goh could be a contender in the elections.
Goh promptly ruled himself out as a contender for the top position and backed Singh for the role. His comments make it clear that Singh, 40, is the favourite to succeed Low.
Taking to Facebook this morning, Goh expressed his support for Singh and said:
“I believe that WP, to further develop as a viable opposition party, needs a leader with the following qualities.
“One, an MP with good experience of speaking and debating in Parliament and able to lead the other WP MPs. Two, an MP who works with his constituents and has their confidence and support. Three, an MP with good experience in leadership of town council management. Four, a humble servant-leader who knows his own flaws, works closely with the party grassroots and exhorts them to unite for the common good of Singapore and Singaporeans.
“On the first three counts, I am only a Non Constituency Member of Parliament with two years of real political experience. I have a lot more to learn.
“Pritam, on the other hand, is a proven MP in these respects. On the fourth point, I worked closely with Pritam on the WP60 Organising Committee (he was Chair, and I was Deputy Chair) and I am convinced he is such a servant-leader.”
Low has remained mum about who his likely successor will be. He has only said that this is something for the party to decide.