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SDP unveils revamped website as speculation over the timing of the next GE heats up

The opposition party says the new website is geared towards functionality for all digital users

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The Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) has unveiled its revamped website, in preparation for the next General Election (GE), weeks after the Elections Department announced the first firm step towards the next election with the formation of the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee (EBRC).

The SDP’s new website was launched at midnight yesterday (18 Sept). Noting that it has “upped the game,” the opposition party revealed that the new website was designed with functionality in mind for all digital users – including those who visit the website through their mobile devices.

The party said: “In the tradition of being at the cutting edge of online campaigning, the SDP is proud to unveil our brand new website. A custom-made platform was developed to offer smartphone users a first-rate user experience. Its design ensures a consistent feel for laptop and tablets users too.

“With the GE coming, accessing information about our campaign, getting updates of our activities, and interacting with our party will be a breeze.”

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The SDP, a 39-year-old political party that is presently led by secretary-general Chee Soon Juan and chairman Paul Tambyah, has organised several pre-GE campaign events since the beginning of this year, including walkabouts, house visits, policy launches and volunteer sessions.

Last month, the SDP became the first opposition party to identify the constituencies it plans to contest in the next GE and announced that it plans to contest Holland-Bukit Timah GRC, Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC, Bukit Batok SMC, Bukit Panjang SMC and Yuhua SMC – the same wards that it contested in the 2015 GE.

On 4 Sept, the Government announced that the EBRC has been convened. The formation of the EBRC – which reviews the boundaries of the electoral map – precedes the calling of the next GE.

In the past three General Elections (GEs), the EBRC has taken between two to four months to complete the review. The time between the release of the EBRC’s report and polling day has ranged from as little as 17 days to as long as six months, in Singapore history.

For the next GE, the EBRC has particularly been tasked to reduce the average size of group representation constituencies (GRCs) and increase the number of single-member constituencies (SMCs). This likely means that the electoral map will be altered significantly.

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Opposition parties will need to wait for the EBRC to release its report to find out how the electoral boundaries have been re-drawn and decide which wards to target. The opposition parties would also have to discuss which ward they wish to contest with other parties, to avoid multiple-corner fights to ensure that the opposition vote is not split.

Speculation on the timing of the next GE has become especially fevered since the EBRC was formed, with both netizens and political observers opining that the next GE could be held as soon as November/December 2019 or in the first quarter of 2020, after the next Budget.

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