SINGAPORE — The Workers’ Party (WP) unveiled on Sunday (28 June) its campaign slogan “Make Your Vote Count”, party manifesto and final slate of four candidates for the 10 July General Election.
In an online media conference from its party headquarters, WP chairperson Sylvia Lim said that its manifesto calls for an accountable democracy and resilient Singapore, one which embraces a diversity of views and encourages robust debate about the way forward.
“If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that Singapore will have to deal with challenges which are real, unexpected and sudden,” Lim said during the media conference.
“No single political party, however powerful, can find all the right answers from within itself... The Workers’ Party has contributions to make. We have good people who are committed to Singapore’s success. Let us move ahead in empowering Singaporeans of all political persuasions.”
Five areas of concern in manifesto
In its manifesto, WP listed five areas of its concerns: tackling COVID-19 and thriving in a post-COVID world; achieving dreams through inclusive education and social policies; providing good jobs and producing dynamic workers; providing a home for all through reducing the cost of living; and building a resilient democracy via accountable political and governance institutions.
While it acknowledges the government’s efforts so far in dealing with this COVID-19 crisis, it calls for the government to offer free vaccinations for the coronavirus when a vaccine becomes available and approved.
It also urges the government to plug gaps in support, such as forgiving HDB rents for low-income residents; making the Self-Employed Person Income Relief Scheme automatic for all self-employed adults below the age of 37; and allowing Singaporeans who have CPF balances that exceeded their minimum sum to withdraw a reasonable percentage of their excess balance.
The party also calls for introduction of a minimum wage of $1,300 per month for full-time work, as well as abolishment of the retirement age, so that Singaporeans are allowed to work for as long as they are able and willing to.
It opposes the imminent Goods and Services Tax hike to 9 per cent, and calls for the abolishment of the group representation constituencies (GRCs). It also wants to lower the current voting age from 21 to 18, and the courts of Singapore to approve government Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act (POFMA) directives.
Last four WP candidates unveiled
WP also unveiled four candidates for the upcoming GE: former research Abdul Shariff Aboo Kassim, 54; lawyer He Ting Ru, 37; Leon Perera, 49, chief executive officer of an international market research consultancy firm; and Gerald Giam Yean Song, 42, chief technology officer of a tech start-up company.
Of the quartet, He, Perera and Giam have had prior experience in contesting in GEs, with Perera and Giam having been appointed Non-Constituency Members of Parliament. He had contested in the Marine Parade GRC in GE2015.
With the quartet’s unveiling, the WP have announced all its 21 candidates for the GE. The party will be contesting in four GRCs and two single-member constituencies (SMCs). They are: Aljunied, Marine Parade, Sengkang and East Coast GRCs, and Hougang and Punggol West SMCs.
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