For the seats won by any opposition party in this GE (perhaps also the last GE), all opposition parties and candidates have made a contribution in unison by ensuring all constituencies are contested. With all seats contested, the likelihood of a free agent in the PAP’s slate of candidates crossing boundaries to help campaigning becomes very unlikely and probably left to retiring MPs which holds little weight. This effect was observable in GE 2011. Very likely will repeat this year.
As for the Punggol East BE – Although it may be said that the whole of PAP’s weight rooted for their candidate in Punggol East By Election, WP’s win was more likely a spill over from WP’s perceived emerging rise and to a small extent the unhappiness against PAP’s botched Moral Policing.
For now, I am not prepared to discount NSP just yet. The party has survived many ups and downs since its founding President Kum Teng Hock and Sec Gen, Soon Kia Seng amongst others set up the party in 1987. Soon Kia Seng had represented SDP prior to founding NSP.
A more interesting account would be that of Kum Teng Hock. For one, he was a PAP representative as a city councillor in 1957, continued to contest under PAP’s ticket in 1959 and crossed over to be on the side of Ong Eng Guan, a founding member of PAP, when Ong set up United People’s Party in 1961 after several disagreements with LKY.
UPP fielded Kum Teng Hock in GE 1963. Kum Teng Hock subsequently represented Workers’ Party as a candidate for GE 1972 & 1976 after UPP’s dissolution soon after separation from Malaysia. In NSP’s first ever GE in 1988, the party contested in 5 SMCs and one GRC, all straight one to one contest against PAP, Kum Teng Hock contested in MacPherson SMC. (This is not meant to justify NSP’s current claim on MacPherson SMC – WP contested there first in 1972, but never contested there again)
Coming back to present day NSP, Despite the talk or rumours of NSP being set up by ISD and is a PAP mole, from available records, I am more incline to view NSP’s setup as intending no harm to opposition front observable from its first GE in 1988. Looking at the credibility of its founding member, the courage of Kum Teng Hock choosing to stand on the side of Ong Eng Guan against Lee Kuan Yew in the early days doesn’t seem to suggest his crossing over from the PAP was a charade. Kum Teng Hock’s political journey does seem to portray a struggle. Strangely, the only record of NSP engaging in multi cornered contest in a GE was in 1997 which NSP’s candidate garnering the most votes amongst opposition candidates for that ward.
With such a history, surely the spirit of struggle exists still in NSP amongst its members who may choose to believe. Hope the remaining members of NSP will do a self correction on the issue at hand and give a good run in GE2015. Surely members not directly involved with the CEC’s decision making processes and volunteers have only one mission in mind… that is to enter the ring for a good contest against PAP.
Other Loyal Singaporean