Four opposition parties that intended to form a new alliance earlier this year are now seeking to be incorporated into the Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA).
The Straits Times reported on Wed night (1 Apr) that Singaporeans First (SingFirst), People’s Power Party (PPP), Reform Party (RP) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) had sent a letter to the SDA expressing their intention to join the alliance.
PPP chief Goh Meng Seng told TOC that according to SingFirst chief Tan Jee Say — on behalf of the four parties — the position held by the parties has always been consistent.
Speaking to ST, Mr Tan said that registering a brand new alliance — as planned earlier in Jan — “will detract from our message/image of a united front if we register another alliance when there is SDA”.
“Hence we believe it would be good if we could all come together under SDA,” he added and confirmed with TOC that they did submit the application.
Mr Goh similarly told TOC that the four parties will either “go in together or we don’t at all”.
The PPP chief previously told TOC on 13 Jan — when queried on why the parties have not opted to join the SDA — that his party had already written in to “ask for a meeting with SDA as we are exploring the possibility of joining SDA”.
However, he said that SDA had “dragged for 4 months but didn’t get back” to PPP.
“We have exhausted all options,” Mr Goh lamented.
SDA chairman Desmond Lim told TOC that there has been no conclusion as of yet on the four parties joining the alliance and that applications filed to the alliance ought to be confidential.
Abu Mohamed, SDA secretary-general and president of Pertubuhan Kebangsaan Melayu Singapura (PKMS) or the Singapore Malay National Organisation, told ST: “They cannot join unless we have the green light from the CEC. I have to call for a CEC meeting, because we have a constitution to abide by.”
Mr Abu however said that given the current COVID-19 situation and the alliance members’ personal commitments, it would be difficult to call for an extraordinary meeting at this point.
The SDA was founded by veteran opposition politician Chiam See Tong in 2001.
The alliance at its founding comprised PKMS, the Singapore People’s Party (SPP), the National Solidarity Party (NSP), and the Singapore Justice Party (SJP).
However, the NSP withdrew from the alliance in 2007. The SPP left the alliance in 2011. At this point, only PKMS and SJP have remained in SDA.