With the resignation of Choo Wee Khiang, former MP of Jalan Besar GRC, the SDP calls on the Government to hold a by-election immediately so that the Party can return to the constituency to vindicate its policies.
Jalan Besar GRC voters were asked to elect a team to represent them in Parliament in the 1997 General Elections. It is now manifestly clear that this team is no longer the same one that asked residents in the GRC for its mandate. In such a situation, any self-respecting Government would return to the constituents in accordance with democratic principles.
In addition, now that Chee Soon Juan and Wong Hong Toy are eligible for elections, the Party urges the PAP to test the propaganda before the people of Jalan Besar GRC that the SDP leaders are deliberately trying to disqualify themselves from elections. The Government has also stated that Singaporeans are not interested in democracy and freedom of speech which the SDP strongly believes in. The PAP should put its claims where its mandate is and bring the matter before the electorate. If a by-election is held the SDP will make, and fight on, the following issues:
- the non-transparent and non-accountable nature of the Government,
- the lack of freedom of speech,
- the PAP’s claim that the people support the Government’s move to cut CPF contributions and wages of our workers,
- the Government’s uncaring attitude towards the more that 30,000 workers who lost their jobs as a result of the present economic crisis,
- the losses incurred in the Suzhou Industrial Park project,
- the failure of pre-1997 election promises on HDB upgrading,
- the lack of action by the Government to resolve the plight of the more than 170,000 CLOB investors,
- the continued claim that PAP ministers are each worth more than $100,000 a month in salary in light of the present economic situation.
The reasons for holding a by-election are compelling. It is now the PAP’s propaganda that should be put to the test.
Chee Soon Juan