Gerrymandering GRCs


WP finally says the G word out loud. If anybody knows where we can read/download the boundaries report, let me know.

 

There is some gerrymandering: WP
However, boundaries report makes identifying areas to contest clearer: Opposition party chairman Sylvia Lim
05:56 AM Feb 25, 2011
by Hoe Yeen Nie

SINGAPORE – The release of the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee report took the Workers’ Party (WP) by surprise.

WP chairman Sylvia Lim told MediaCorp last night that the party was still studying the report.

“Personally, I wasn’t expecting it today. I thought it would be sometime in March. But then it doesn’t matter because we’ll still have to respond to it,” she said.

Ms Lim did not mince her words about the report and how it affected the WP.

“What struck us, at first glance, is that we believe there is some gerrymandering involved in favour of the ruling party.

“If you look at Aljunied GRC, for example, we note very quickly there have been nine precincts given out of Aljunied GRC. Seven to Ang Mo Kio GRC and two to Punggol-Pasir Ris.

“And particularly these precincts are actually very close to Hougang SMC (Single Member Constituency), where we know there is significant WP support.”

She said in their place, six precincts, carved out from Marine Parade, had been given to Aljunied GRC.

In the last General Election in 2006, Ms Lim led a WP team against a People’s Action Party team anchored by Foreign Minister George Yeo. Her team won 43.9 per cent of the vote, the best showing by an opposition team in the polls.

Ms Lim said: “The total number of electors, there’s not much difference under the new Aljunied GRC compared to the previous Aljunied GRC, so why is there a need for a change?”

WP vice-chairman Mohd Rahizan Yaacob, who was part of the WP team which contested in Aljunied GRC in the 2006 elections, said the party would have to look ahead and plan for the elections.

Ms Lim added: “As far as the new boundaries are concerned, whether it’s Aljunied or the other areas WP is working on, we would still need to work on the new areas that have been given over to the constituencies that we’re hoping to contest. So there’s new work to be done.”

She said they would like to focus on the areas they were more familiar with.

And they would be interested in Aljunied and East Coast GRCs, as well as Hougang and Joo Chiat SMCs.

Ms Lim added they were also keen on Nee Soon GRC, Punggol East and Sengkang West.

Still, the release of the report has made things clearer.

She said: “Now, at least we know which are the definite areas. And once we work out exactly which constituencies we’ll want to contest in, then our ground work will be much more focused.”

She also expected a meeting among the opposition parties, including WP, to sort out the constituencies where they planned to contest.

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