Hearing to determine by-election in Marsiling Yew Tee GRC set to be held on 15 Jan 2018

Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) has announced that the hearing for the legal action on whether the government needs to hold a by-election in the Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC is set for a half-day hearing on 15 January 2018.

According to SDP, this was determined at the pre-trial conference (PTC) held on Monday morning.

The party also noted that SDP will not be a party in the legal action as the Attorney-General, Mr Lucien Wong had objected to the SDP being part of the action. Mr Wong, was said to have objected to the party’s involvement by stating that the party had no standing in the issue.

SDP had fielded candidates for the Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC during the General Election 2015. The party was represented by Dr Wong Suke Yee John Tan, Bryan Lim and Damanhuri Abas as the minority candidate.

The party said that it agreed to withdraw from the action in order not to complicate the proceedings and hold up the process. Therefore, Dr Wong Souk Yee, a resident in the GRC, will be the sole plaintiff in the legal action.

SDP wrote, “The withdrawal does not change the essence of the legal action. Our position is that the PAP must abide by the constitution and the spirit of democracy by ensuring that an MP who vacates his/her seat be replaced by another MP through a by-election. As such, the SDP will support Dr Wong in her action.”

Dr Wong had earlier filed an affidavit in September in which she stated that with Ms Halimah Yacob (now President) resigning her seat, her constituency would not be fully represented in Parliament until the next general election if a by-election is not called.

In addition, the affidavit said that Ms Halimah’s resignation meant that the GRC would be left without an elected minority MP to represent the minority constituents there.

Dr Wong also stated in her affidavit that if a by-election is called, she would contest in it under the SDP ticket.

Currently, the minority candidate at Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC is left vacant. However, People’s Action Party has appointed Mr Zaqy Mohamad, its Member of Parliament for Choa Chu Kang GRC as the grassroots advisor to stand in for Ms Halimah’s vacancy.

For those who are keen in supporting SDP’s legal action, can visit this site here.