In his media interview with Chinese reporters, PAP MP for Joo Chiat Charles Chong poured sarcasm at the Workers’ Party-held Punggol East SMC saying he feel sorry for their residents because Aljunied GRC made a mess out of their town council accounts.
Currently also the Chairman for Punggol East PAP branch, MP Charles Chong was the MP for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC from 2001 to 2011 and he claimed that residents were delighted and the morale of the grassroots were very high when they heard him “coming home” to contest against the Workers’ Party MP Lee Lilian.
In recent weeks, MP Charles Chong has been conducting Meet-the-people sessions in Punggol East, seemingly suggesting that he has abandoned his residents at Joo Chiat when the Prime Minister announced that Joo Chiat SMC will be merged into other GRCs. PAP MP Charles Chong barely won the Joo Chiat SMC from the Workers’ Party candidate Yee Jenn Jong by only 388 votes in the last GE.
Charles Chong has also only recently announced his retirement from the Singapore Airlines this year (2015), and it appears the Prime Minister is sending a retiree MP to test the ground at Punggol East SMC. The SMC was won by the Workers’ Party in a by-election triggered by a resignation from a high profile extra-marital affair from its previous PAP MP Michael Palmer.
The PAP candidates have been playing up the lapses of the Workers’ Party’s management of the town council which have been in trouble with financial technicalities after the Ministry of National Development repeatedly refuses to release more than S$14 million of government grants despite losing 2 court cases.
National policies have since taken a back seat and PAP candidates are swerving away from bread and butter topics like immigration, retirement and public transport.