People’s Voice (PV) will not resume house-to-house or community visits for at least another week despite walkabouts of not more than five people in a group are allowed during Phase Two of reopening, said the Party chief and founder Lim Tean on Facebook yesterday (18 June).
Mr Lim explained that the Party’s decision to delay the resumption of such activities is due to the COVID-19 situation in the country, which has yet to remain stable.
In his post, he called out the ruling party for being reckless and selfish in deciding to hold the General Election (GE) amid the COVID-19 pandemic, given that the deadline for holding the election is still about 10 months away, and the situation would be far more stable then.
“We continue to condemn this reckless government for even contemplating holding the GE during this period when the deadline for holding elections is some 10 months away, when the coronavirus situation would be far more stable and when life would have largely returned to normal.
“There is no basis to endanger the safety of our People to the virus by holding elections now when local cases are still in the hundreds and community cases still abound. Only a selfish and self-interested ruling party can be contemplating such a move.”
Mr Lim also noted that his party will not “put residents in the predicament” of having to engage with strangers on their doorsteps at a time when any person could be a potential carrier of COVID-19.
“Even when our community visits resume, we may decide to visit only communal areas where residents have the CHOICE whether to engage with people who are not members of their own households.”
According to the PV chief, the Party will resume its house-to-house or community visits on 26 June at the earliest.
Walkabouts and door-to-door campaigning of not more than five persons in a group are allowed as the country enters into Phase Two of reopening on 19 June
During Phase Two of Singapore’s reopening, small-group social gatherings of up to any five persons will be resumed and households may also receive up to five visitors at any one time, according to the multi-ministry taskforce.
The “rule of five” for gatherings will also be applied to walkabouts leading up to the next GE.
“In terms of activities, we’ve highlighted if you’re out and about, then the rule of five would apply. So you can go out with your friends to exercise, to go on a walk, then up to five people, but not more than that, and all must wear masks,” said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong on 15 June, responding to a media query on guidelines for walkabouts if the next GE will be held in Phase Two.
He added — in response to a question on the election time frame and how the reopening of economies and society could affect campaigning — that the election guidelines are “put together separately by the Elections Department”.
On Thursday (18 June), the Elections Department (ELD) released the preliminary campaigning guidelines, noting that the group of conducting the walkabouts and door-to-door campaigning should not be more than five persons and safe distancing measures have to be complied.
“Any group doing a walkabout or door-to-door campaigning should be made up of not more than five persons, there should be no mixing between groups, and each group should remain at least one metre apart from other groups,” the ELD stated.
On top of this, the ELD also stated that physical rallies will not be allowed, but there will be more airtime on national television channels for all political parties for the GE campaigning.
“Candidates may use perambulating vehicles for campaigning, but they will not be permitted to speak or livestream or broadcast music or videos from the vehicle,” it added.
Noting that the guidelines follow the reference from the Ministry of Health (MOH)’s guidelines pertaining to Phase Two of the country’s reopening, the ELD said, “The announcement of these guidelines has no relation to the timing of the general election, which will be decided by the Prime Minister.”