Changi Airport Group Vice President for Terminal 5 Planning, Future System, Poh Li San recently announced that she would be more than happy to represent the Sembawang residents as a People’s Action Party (PAP) candidate, if given the opportunity.
However, she did say it’s too early to tell if she would be offered the chance to stand in the upcoming polls, contrary to the rumours that she might be fielded as a PAP candidate in the next general election.
“If there is an opportunity for me to serve residents at a deeper level, I will be most honoured to do so, and I will do my best as well. At this moment, it is still uncertain and is really up to anybody’s guess,” she said to reporters in the sidelines of the inaugural Women’s Festival 2019 at Kampung Admiralty on 24 March (Sunday).
Ms Poh, who is a Singapore Force scholarship (overseas) awardee, first gained recognition in the Republic of Singapore Air Force as a helicopter pilot conducting search and rescue operation in a Super Puma helicopter. She was then hired as the full-time aide-de-camp for the late President S R Nathan. She was in fact the first woman to be appointed in that role.
After that, she joined Changi Airport Group and assisted in conceptualising Terminal 4, and is currently involved in planning of the latest Terminal 5.
As for her journey into politics, from October 2018, she had been part of the PAP Sembawang branch as an active grassroots leader, assisting MP Ong Ye Kung in his Meet-the-People Session every Monday in the Gembas ward.
When asked if Sembawang GRC would benefit from a female touch, she said that there were many advantages of having a female MP. She added, “Women may be sensitive to certain issues that they feel uncomfortable to share with a male MP. Having a woman’s voice among the team will (help us) focus on more women-oriented issued.”
Ms Poh continued, “It is a great call and a great way to get women to step forward and contribute to the community and country…We need to bring more women on board together, because it will be more powerful to work as a team of women leaders.”
Upon reading her announcement, close to 150 comments were received by netizens on the Strait Times (ST) Facebook page. Many netizens were not entirely thrilled with her announcement as they felt that she is just another “high flyer” who is entering politics to get a higher salary.
Some even questioned why is she joining PAP and not the opposition. Others asked what would she be able to contribute to the society if she becomes a PAP candidate.
However, a bunch of netizens support Ms Poh’s decision to stand for the upcoming general elections, and highlighted that more women are needed in politics. Facebook user Teo Chek Meng even said Ms Poh’s “views would not only be a helicopter’s view, but a balanced one as she already has grassroots experience”.