Jan 27, 2013

Singapore - By-election result can't be taken as trend in future: Low Thia Khiang

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SINGAPORE: Workers' Party (WP) chief Low Thia Khiang said the result of the Punggol East by-election should not be seen as a trend for the future.

He said a by-election is different from a general election.

He believes that in a by-election, voters of Punggol East had no worries that they would "accidentally throw out the government".

He said the message is very clear that the role of WP is that of check and balance on the government.

"We give them time and we don't agitate. I think the message got through and they gave us the mandate to make sure that the People's Action Party does its job," said Mr Low.

Mr Low said the party has made it clear that it is not ready to be the next or alternative government, as it has limited resources and does not want to give Singaporeans false expectations.

He said the government is competent but it needs to re-prioritise and address the issues related to costs of living.

He said even though policies have been reviewed, policy u-turns need time to take effect.

Mr Low said his party will play its role in checking on the government but warned against politicising everything.

He said that as a rational and responsible party, WP should work with the government to bring about change and improvements.

Mr Low, who spoke to reporters before a thank-you parade in Punggol East on Sunday morning, said while democracy is important for political vibrancy, it's not productive to politicise everything.

The party will have seven elected seats in Parliament, after its candidate, Ms Lee Li Lian, won the by-election in the single-seat ward with 54.5 per cent of the vote share.

- CNA/fa

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