Singaporeans vote in general election
Sep 17, 2015 Singaporeans recently went to the polls to exercise their franchise in the country’s general election. Prior to the election, participating parties had engaged in extensive campaign exercises in a move to gather public support.
Speaking on the election, Koh Chin Yee, chairman of Longus Research Institute said:
“Singapore’s election has been focusing on livelihood issues, such as your housing, your education, the employment, whether there will be strong economic growth in next five or ten years, whether you can have enough bonuses and whether your salary will increase. These are the issues that the election focuses,”
The ruling People’s Action Party saw all 89 parliamentary seats challenged by the opposition for the first time since the country’s independence in 1965.
The Party has led the country to become one of the advanced economies within the last few decades. However, the country is currently facing a widening gap between the various economic classes and decreased employment opportunities for citizens following an increase in immigrant labor force.
Following the 2011 general election, the Singaporean government placed a limit on the number of migrants and foreign workers in a bid to ease the issues.
According to Zheng Yongnian, director of East Asian Institute at the National University of Singapore, the country’s election has been heavily influenced by sentiments.
“Election has been more and more affected by political sentiment, which also leads the public opinion instead of a real rational consideration. So it is also a huge issue to balance immediate interest and long-term interest,”
Singaporeans overseas were also offered an opportunity to cast their votes. Polling stations were provided in Beijing, Hong Kong, London, Tokyo, New York and Dubai, where a significant number of Singaporeans live and work.