Singapore – The Progress Singapore Party (PSP) has released its statement on the electoral boundaries and urged the current Government to consider the implications of holding the General Elections early amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
On Saturday (Mar 14), the PSP, represented by Secretary-General Dr Tan Cheng Bock, posted their response to the release of the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee Report (EBRC) which implies the possibility of pushing the GE early and have proposed three options as a countermeasure.
“Dear Singaporeans, the release of the EBRC report is an indication that the General Election is coming soon,” started Dr Tan. “However, we have a Covid-19 pandemic crisis now.”
“Is it wise to hold a General Election in the midst of this Covid-19 pandemic?” he asked. He continued by saying that by holding the GE, more than 2.6 million voters would be exposed to the virus on polling day as voting is compulsory, not to mention the rallies and other large group election activities held during the campaign period. “Is this a risk we want to take?” Dr Tan asked. “There is this potential mass exposure to the virus.”
Thus, Dr Tan said the GE “should not be considered at this time.” Instead, “we should put politics aside and take care of our people’s health and welfare first.”
He gave a couple of examples of other countries who have postponed their upcoming elections as a response to the pandemic. In the US, the Louisiana Primary has been moved from April to June this year while the local and mayoral elections in England were moved a year to May 2021.
“So, what options then? I can think of three,” said Dr Tan.
The first is to call the General Election only at such time when Covid-19 is no longer a crisis. Or, call the General Election at the end of the term, April 2021. Lastly, if the pandemic is still with us by then, the President can exercise her soft power and form a caretaker government consisting of some of the current MPs, said Dr Tan.
“Subsequently, call for fresh elections when Covid-19 is no longer a crisis.”
He reiterated that “in the interest of the people, the PSP strongly urge the Government not to hold a GE while the Covid-19 pandemic is still with us.”
Many aired their agreement to the PSP’s statement and hoped the Government would take heed of the suggestions.
Meanwhile, some saw the release of the EBRC report as a strategic move to “prevent supporters from attending the opposition parties rallies.”
Low Suang Leng advised Dr Tan to “prepare for the election” because it is highly unlikely for the Government to postpone the GE. “Don’t waste time, just get prepared and fight them at the GE,” he suggested.
UPDATE: STATEMENT ON ELECTORAL BOUNDARIES #progresssingaporeparty #psp #singapore #SGunited #togethersingapore #DefendSG
Posted by Progress Singapore Party on Saturday, March 14, 2020