Four opposition parties — Singaporeans First (SingFirst), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), People’s Power Party (PPP) and Reform Party — are set to form a new alliance in anticipation of the next General Election (GE) which must be held by Apr next year.
The Straits Times reported on Fri (3 Jan) that the four parties seeking to contest under the new alliance are looking into registering the alliance at the end of this month.
SingFirst secretary-general Tan Jee Say — formerly a presidential candidate, civil servant and Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) candidate in GE2011 — is poised to lead the new alliance, according to ST, with plans to field approximately 30 candidates in the upcoming election.
A PPP insider told ST that the party, along with SingFirst and RP, had discussed the prospect of forming an alliance following the last GE in 2015.
“Coming together, we will have more shared resources and more importantly, we can bring all our talents together, and form a stronger team,” a senior member of the PPP told ST, adding: “We (opposition parties) have indicated time and again that we will form a true alliance, now we are fulfilling that.”
He added that the next step for the alliance is to “deliberate our differences in policies, views and approach, and create a common policy platform”.
A DPP insider told ST that officials from the four parties had also reached out to other opposition parties such as the Singapore People’s Party (SPP), National Solidarity Party (NSP), People’s Voice Party (PV) and Singapore’s youngest political party, Progress Singapore Party (PSP).
SPP’s assistant secretary-general Ariffin Sha told ST that the party leadership was “unanimous” in declining the proposal to become a part of the new alliance, while PV’s chief Lim Tean said that he was not aware of such an alliance.
NSP secretary-general Spencer Ng told ST that the party will not be joining the new alliance for now, and will be keeping its options open in the meantime — a view similarly espoused by a PSP insider, who told ST that the party will not be part of the alliance’s founding constituent parties.
PSP’s founding chief Tan Cheng Bock — a former People’s Action Party (PAP) cadre and Member of Parliament (MP) — himself has previously rejected the idea of an opposition party alliance, stating that “it is not nice” to “push your way in and take over control of all these parties” at a party press conference in Jul last year.