WP wins Aljunied GRC, makes key breakthrough

The Workers' Party 'A' team win Aljunied GRC. (Yahoo! photo/Christine Choo)


Aljunied has fallen.

The Workers' Party won the key GRC battleground, beating the PAP team led by Foreign Minister George Yeo. It is the first time an Opposition party has won a GRC in Singapore's political history.

The WP team led by secretary general Low Thia Kiang won by a majority of 54 percent to 45 percent of votes -- by a surprisingly big margin of over 9 per cent.

In his victory speech to supporters in Hougang stadium, Low said "history has been made tonight", calling it "a political landmark in modern Singapore."

For Foreign Minister Yeo, questions will arise over his future now that he is not an elected Member of Parliament.

Gracious in defeat, he congratulated Low and his team and hoped the WP "would look after the people of Aljunied well."

He said, "It was a great campaign and we fought hard, we had no regrets and we respect the decision of the people of Aljunied... A new chapter has opened in Singapore's history and this is a tide we were not able to overcome."

Besides Aljunied GRC, the only other seat that went to the Opposition was won by WP's Yaw Shin Leong, who retained the Hougang SMC. He beat PAP new face Desmond Choo by a healthy margin of 64 percent to 35 per cent.

Workers' Party's Yaw Shin Leong wins Hougang SMC. (Yahoo! photo/Liyana Low)

"This is a very humbling moment for me," said Yaw, who thanked his "mentor" Low Thia Kiang in his victory speech.

"Because the people of Hougang have voted not just with their hearts but with their minds because they they know that in Hougang, we have a role to play. And this role is a role that has nationalistic importance," he said.

The losing Choo congratulated Yaw on his victory and said, "There is little joy in defeat but we have seen the needs of residents in Hougang. I will continue my work in Hougang and we will be back to fight a better fight!"

Overall, the PAP was returned to power by winning 81 of 87 seats in Parliament but its overall winning margin of votes -- 60.1 per cent -- was the lowest since the country's independence.

PM Lee's PAP party is returned to power by 60.1 per cent of votes -- the lowest winning margin since independence. (AP photo)

CHIAM SEE TONG LOSES

In one of the more hotly contested wards of Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC, the PAP team led by DPM Wong Kan Seng beat the SPP party led by opposition veteran MP Chiam See Tong.

DPM Wong later said, "My team and I are grateful for your support and humbled. For those who did not vote for us, we will continue to serve you well and earn your trust...after the results, we should put aside our differences... the government has heard you and what you are telling us."

But it was a big blow to Singapore's longest-serving opposition member Chiam, whose wife Lina also lost in Potong Pasir SMC.

It was third time lucky for PAP candidate of Seetoh Yi Pin, who secured victory by the slimmest margin of less than 100 votes.

In his victory speech, Seetoh thanked Chiam for his "27 years of dedicated service" to Potong Pasir residents and wished the couple good health and a good life.

However, Lina Chiam could take up one of the Nominated Member of Parliament (NCMP) seats reserved for the closest losers.

In Ang Mo Kio GRC, the six-member PAP team helmed by PM Lee Hsien Loong defeated the RP team led by Mansor Rahman.

PM Lee said in victory speech, "Thank you very much for your support and confidence in my team...and with a bigger majority than last time. All of us pledge our efforts to make Ang Mo Kio a better community to work and to play."

TIN PEI LING BECOMES YOUNGEST MP

Tin Pei Ling became the youngest elected MP at the age of 27. (Yahoo! file photo)

Elsewhere, in Marine Parade GRC, Tin Pei Ling became the youngest elected MP at the age of 27 after her PAP team led by SM Goh Chok Tong beat the NSP team by 56 per cent of votes to 43 percent.

The GRC was seen as the battle between the PAP's Tin Pei Ling and the party's Nicole Seah.

PAP's SM Goh Chok Tong thanked his supporters and later said, "My team and I have listened to you and will work with you to address the issues raised. We will work harder after the election... and we will deliver on all our promises in the next five years."

In Tampines GRC, the PAP team led by Mah Bow Tan beat the NSP team led by Goh Meng Seng by 57 percent to 42 percent of votes.

In Pasir-Ris Punggol GRC, the PAP team led by DPM Teo Chee Hean beat the WP by a healthy 64 per cent to 35 per cent of votes.

In West Coast GRC, the PAP team led by Minister Lim Hng Kiang defeated the Reform Party led by Kenneth Jeyaretnam by a big margin of 66 per cent to 33 per cent.

"We will continue to serve you, West Coast" said Minister Lim in his victory speech, thanking his party aides and supporters."

Despite losing, RP party leader Jeyaretnam said he was encouraged by the results.

"We have learned a lot. We are the first new party to be set up in over 20 years. We are very happy with our 33 percent. The second time round we will do better," he said.

In Holland-Bukit Timah GRC, the PAP team led by Dr Vivian Balakrishnan beat the SDP party led by Dr Vincent Wijeysingha.

In East Coast GRC, the PAP team led by Minister Lim Swee Say beat the WP team led by Eric Tan by 54 per cent of votes to 45 per cent of votes.

Minister Lim thanked voters for "standing by" his team and to those that did not vote for his team, he said, "We are sorry that our best is not good enough for you but we will work harder in the next five years. There is a a lot we want to achieve for East Coast and for Singapore."

In Sembawang GRC, the PAP team led by Health Minister Khaw Boon Wan beat the SDP team led by the SDP's James Gomez by a strong mandate of 63 percent of votes.

PAP wins SMCs

In the only three-cornered fight in Punggol SMC, PAP's Michael Palmer beat WP's Lee Li Lian and Singapore Democratic Alliance's Desmond Lim.

Palmer is the first minority race candidate to win an SMC.

SDA's Lim blamed the three-cornered fight that diluted the number of votes for the opposition.

In Mountbatten SMC, the PAP's Lim Biow Chuan beat National Solidarity Party's J Chong Aruldoss. Lim took 11,965 votes compared to Aruldoss' 8,436, just over 41 per cent of the votes.

In Bukit Panjang SMC, PAP's Teo Ho Pin beat the SDP's Alec Tok by 66 percent to 33 per cent of votes.

In Radin Mas SMC , PAP's Tan Chin Siong beat NSP's Yip Yew Weng by 67 per cent to 32 per cent of votes.

In Whampoa SMC, PAP's Heng Chee How beat the NSP's Ken Sun by 66 per cent to 33 per cent of votes.

In Joo Chiat SMC, PAP's Charles Chong narrowly beat the WP candidate of Yee Jenn Jong by less than 400 votes.

He later thanked his voters and said the result was encouraging because he was new to the ward, having moved from Pasir Ris to contest in Joo Chiat. He told his voters to rest and "work will start on Monday."

In Yuhua SMC, PAP's Grace Fu beat the SDP's Teo Soh Lung by 66 per cent to 33 percent of votes.

In Seng Kang West, PAP's Lam Pin Min beat the WP's Koh Choong Yong 58 per cent to 41 of votes.

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