Singapore to See Four-Way Election Contest for Parliament Seat

Four candidates will run in a Singapore election this month for a seat in Parliament vacated by its former speaker, who resigned after admitting to an extramarital affair.

The candidates for the Jan. 26 race to represent Punggol East constituency include Koh Poh Koon from the ruling People’s Action Party and Lee Li Lian of the Workers’ Party, according to Returning Officer Yam Ah Mee. Desmond Lim from the Singapore Democratic Alliance and Kenneth Jeyaretnam of the Reform Party will also be on the ballot.

The poll may be seen as a barometer of support for Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, whose party retained power in May 2011 general elections with the smallest margin of victory since independence in 1965. In the past year, Lee has cut ministerial pay, accelerated construction of public housing and made permanent a program to provide cash, utility rebates and medical funds for the elderly and low-income households.

The candidates are seeking to fill the seat vacated by Michael Palmer of the PAP last month. He won the district, a suburb in north-eastern Singapore, with 54.5 percent of valid votes cast in the 2011 elections.

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