S’pore Prez dissolves Parliament, paves way for polls

BEIJING, May 15, 2019 (Xinhua) — Singaporean President Halimah Yacob delivers a speech at the opening ceremony of the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations (150519) at the China National Convention Center in Beijing, capital of China, May 15, 2019. (Xinhua/Ju Huanzong/IANS)

Singapore, June 23 (IANS) Singapore President Halimah Yacob on Tuesday dissolved Parliament, paving the way for a widely-anticipated general election that will take place in phase two of the city-state’s reopening amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Writ of Election, which specifies the date of the polls, is expected to be issued shortly, while Nomination Day has been set for June 30, The Straits Times quoted the Prime Minister’s Office as saying in a statement.

In a televised address to the nation on Tuesday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said he has decided to call the general election now, while the COVID-19 situation is relatively stable, to “clear the decks” and give the new government a fresh, full five-year mandate.

After the election, the new government can focus on the national agenda, which includes handling the coronavirus pandemic, economy and jobs, he said.

“The government that you elect will have critical decisions to make,” Lee said.

“These decisions will impact your lives and livelihoods, and shape Singapore for many years to come, far beyond the five-year term of the next government.”

The election, Singapore’s 13th since independence, is likely to again see the People’s Action Party (PAP) challenged for all seats – as the ruling party was in 2015, said The Straits Times report.

A total of 93 elected seats are at stake — in 17 group representation constituencies and 14 single-member constituencies.



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