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Chan Chun Sing says “not much time” left to call for next GE

He added that although they had until April to call the election what people do not realise is that parliament has be to dissolved in January to comply with the five year requirement

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Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing said that Singapore has to dissolve Parliament by January 2021 and there’s “not much time” left for the government to hold its next general election.

His comments came on Wednesday (May 20), in an interview with Bloomberg TV.

“A lot of people think that we have all the time in the world until next April to call the election”, Mr Chan said following an interview with Bloomberg TV, in what sounded like a jibe directed at the opposition who have suggested postponing the election.

He added: “That’s technically correct, but what people do not remember is that parliament will be dissolved in January because parliament has to be dissolved five years after the first sitting for this term of government.”

According to Mr Chan, abiding by the constitution would give a time frame of about three months before elections would have to be called

Mr Chan said there’s actually “not much time” judging by this tight deadline.

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The Electoral Boundaries Review Committee (EBRC) report was released on Friday (March 13) and it announced that there will be more electoral divisions but no six-member Group Representation Constituencies (GRCs) in the coming elections.

The Government accepted the committee’s recommendations and will implement them in the next elections.

In a Facebook post on March 14, a day after the EBRC report was released, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong noted that the Covid-19 outbreak will likely last at least this year, and quite possibly longer.

He said there are two choices when it comes to the timing of the General Election: To hold elections after things stabilise or “else to call elections early, knowing that we are going into a hurricane, to elect a new government with a fresh mandate and a full term ahead of it, which can work with Singaporeans on the critical tasks at hand”.

He added that precautions will be taken if elections are to be held before the Covid-19 crisis is resolved. /TISG

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