SINGAPORE: Heavyweight ruling party minister Chan Chun Sing skirted an opposition MP’s parliamentary question about whether the Government would announce the formation of the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee (EBRC) as soon as it convenes.
Instead of directly answering the question, Mr Chan said the EBRC “should be allowed to carry out its work professionally, away from media attention or public pressures.”
Mr Chan, the Education Minister, was responding to a series of queries by Workers’ Party MP Gerald Giam on whether the EBRC had been convened.
The Cabinet minister revealed that the committee, which is responsible for delineating electoral boundaries for upcoming general elections, has not been convened as of yet.
Assuring there would be a sufficient duration between the release of the EBRC’s report and the actual election, Mr Chan said that there would be ample time for candidates and political parties to prepare for the election.
Responding to Mr Giam’s inquiry about whether the Prime Minister would promptly announce the formation of the EBRC when it occurs, Mr Chan did not provide a direct answer but reiterated the importance of the committee’s independent and focused work.
Mr Giam also sought clarification on whether the EBRC would be obligated to furnish detailed reasons for each constituency boundary change, going beyond considerations of fair representation based on constituency size and population shifts.
Mr Chan explained in his written reply that committee members, comprising experts in population shifts and new housing developments, independently analyze pertinent data before formulating their recommendations.
The EBRC’s responsibilities include considering demographic changes, shifts in population density, and new developments that may impact constituency boundaries.
The last assembly of the EBRC occurred in August 2019, leading up to the general election held in July 2020.