Singapore government calls for early election

Singapore PM Lee calls for snap election on Sept. 11

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong waves as he arrives for Singapore's Golden Jubilee celebrations, August 9, 2015

Singapore will hold a general election on Sept. 11, more than one year earlier than the deadline, the government declared on Tuesday.

"I called this general election to seek your mandate to take Singapore beyond SG50, into its next half century," the PM Lee Hsien Loong said on Tuesday on his Facebook page.

Lee’s People's Action Party has been ruling the country since before the independence of the city-state, when his father Lee Kuan Yew was in power with high rates of polls.

Lee has been the PM since 2004. His party got the lowest rate in the last poll in 2011 with 60 percent, 7 percent lower than the previous election in 2006. That gave him 81 seats in the parliament with 87 seats.

The government’s decision is seen as a wish to take advantage of the glow of the 50th independence anniversary of the country, a former British colony that was ejected from Malaysian Federation in 1965.

Eugene Tan, associate professor of law at Singapore Management University said "For the PAP, it will be about slowing down the political inroads that the opposition made in 2011."

In the independence day celebrations on Aug. 9, Lee had declared he was going to call for early elections in his annual speech.

"If you are proud of what we have achieved together, if you support what we want to do ahead, the future that we are building, then please support me, please support my team," he had said.

The Singapore government is basicly criticised for the high cost of living and immigration.

On the cost of living the PM promised for help to families and elderly people, but on immigrants he had said "If we close our door to foreign workers, our economy will tank."




TRTWorld and agencies