This meeting, traditionally held before elections, is aimed at preventing multi-cornered fights – where more than one opposition party contests in a ward held by PAP politicians.
Yesterday (27 Jul), the Reform Party stated that it had “fundamental reservations about a back room meeting behind closed doors,” referring to the meeting on Friday.
The party called the meeting a “denial of the fundamental democratic rights of the citizens,” saying that it “can hardly demand transparency and accountability of the PAP Government while not practising it ourselves.”
“The Opposition has to change its ways. It is not enough to turn up every four or five years for a look see or a photo opportunity. The residents live there every day not just when the cameras come out. “
The RP also slammed the National Solidarity Party for calling the meeting without consultation with other opposition parties.
“This kind of big show provides all the wrong kind of publicity. How much better to call an open meeting where for example every party gets puts forward its manifesto for five minutes. That is what we would call solidarity.”
As it stands, the NSP looks set to face a squeeze come the General Election.
It is keen to mount a fresh challenge in its previously-contested constituencies of Marine Parade and Tampines GRCs.
However, the Workers’ Party has claimed Marine Parade as its next battle ground, with Tan Jee Says’ Singaporeans First Party eyeing Tampines.
In other parts, Benjamin Pwee’s Democratic Progressive Party wants to take the fight to Potong Pasir SMC and Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC.
That puts the DPP on a collision course with the Singapore People’s Party, with the SPP’s Lina Chiam looking to reclaim its long-standing Potong Pasir ward from the PAP.
The Reform Party has staked its claim on Ang Mo Kio and West Coast GRC, and Radin Mas SMC.
So far, multi-cornered fights appear slim in these wards.