Ms Lee Li Lian, opposition Workers' Party candidate for the Punggol East By-Election, was elected MP last evening. Congratulations to her!
It is said that her margin of victory was unexpected. In fact, it was astounding. I had earlier said to some colleagues that Dr Koh will be elected, no doubt about that. Well, it just shows how bad I am about politics and predictions. I am glad I stayed away from making too many predictions, and making them openly, unlike Mr Desmond Lim who, unwisely, put himself up for election and lost his deposit for the second time. I appreciate his wanting to "stay faithful", but I thought it was foolishness. When people have all but said they are not interested in you (he garnered only 4.45% in the last General Elections (2011), he should have seen the writing on the wall. Numbers do tell a story, pity that he cannot or refuse to see it. How to be a leader like that? Who dare follow you to the edge of a cliff?
At least Chee Soon Juan of the SDP has better sense, and perhaps, in the longer run, timing. But well, Mr Lim's deposit money will go to government coffers, and that will benefit the people, right?
But back to Ms Lee, whom the press has described as a "feisty" women. Indeed, she had the guts to stand against a much more highly educated specialist doctor. Of course she benefitted from the strong support of WP's leadership and machinery, but nevertheless, it is Ms Lee who is putting her head on the chopping block. She reportedly work tirelessly, visited every apartment block in the constituency, and made hard hitting speeches in the rallies. Perhaps not the best, not the longest and not the most inspiring. She might have had a lot of coaching, But then, who doesn't get coached? So you must give it to her for running a tireless campaign. And I salute the 54.52% of the voters who threw in their lot with her.
They were not seduced by the PAP's rash of "special offers" leading up to and during the political hustings. They were not distracted by other fringe candidates. They did not have a lot of amenities. But they placed their trust in this erstwhile Normal Stream and subsequently Polytechnic graduate (she also earned a business degree from Curtin University). Nowhere comparable to an MBBS and whatever other letters after Dr Koh's name. That's either faith or foolishness, only time will tell.
But I surmise that she will do well. But then, that's me with my predictions again. However, I am entitled to be right at least for once?