SDP holds party conference amidst dramatic expansion

Singapore Democrats

Newly elected party chairman Jufrie Mahmood with Secretary-General Chee Soon Juan

The SDP held its Ordinary Party Conference (OPC) on 25 August 2011 and elected a new Central Executive Committee (CEC) amidst a strong sense of mission and hope. Our rapidly expanding ranks and quality of our membership enables us to look forward with confidence and vigour.

The SDP’s vote share in the 2011 General Elections increased by 14 percent, the highest improvement of all the parties. It came in the wake of a highly credible slate of candidates contesting in four constituencies.

The ruling party, the People’s Action Party, saw its vote share plummet to its lowest level of 60.1% since 1963 amidst growing dissatisfaction with high ministerial salaries alongside declining wages and rising inflation, and a leadership perceived as arrogant and out of touch.

Alongside the improvement in the Singapore Democrats’ performance is also a dramatic increase in our membership and volunteer base.

The party credits this expansion to the former CEC building up the party and a resulting slate of highly credible candidates attracted by the party’s sense of mission, organisational capacity, media management, and a slew of deeply thought through policy documents, including its groundbreaking Shadow Budget 2011: Empowering the Nation, which was unveiled a few days before the Government budget in March 2011.

As with previous OPCs, a new CEC was elected at the conference for the next two years (see line-up below).

The SDP recognises that the CEC is by no means the body that possesses all the skills and know-how that the party offers. We believe that rather than concentrate all our talent within the CEC, it is important to distribute our capabilities across the various departments of the party.

At this stage of the SDP’s development, a larger management structure is essential for the party to cope with our expanding work and, as such, capable members are being deployed across a much wider leadership team.

To develop the full potential of our new leaders we have created a thematic management structure. Named the Outreach Committee, it comprises Community Services, Training & Development, Policy Studies, Communications, Ground Operations, and Fundraising. This enables all our leadership skills and abilities to be fanned out so as to ensure a high quality of management across all the party’s work streams.

To be an effective party, we are facilitating the placement of our talented members where their skills and experience will be best utilised. All this is undertaken to ensure that the Singapore Democrats build our capacity as we continue on our Road to 2016.

The new CEC comprises of:

Asst Secretary-General      
Asst Treasurer

Jufrie Mahmood
Vincent Cheng
Chee Soon Juan
John Tan
Vincent Wijeysingha
John Law
Christopher Ang
Chee Siok Chin
Mohd Isa
Francis Yong
Sadasivam Veriyah
Bryan Lim                           

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