Punggol East Single Member Constituency

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Punggol East
Single Member Constituency
for the Parliament of Singapore
Punggol East SMC locator map.svg
Region Northeastern Singapore
Electorate 34,466
Current constituency
Created 2011
Member(s) Charles Chong
Town Council Pasir Ris-Punggol
Not to be confused with the pre-independence era ward in Punggol and Hougang areas called the Punggol Member Constituency which was formed prior to 1959 general elections by carving out a portion of the then-defunct Punggol-Tampines SMC, which lasted until prior to 1991 general elections when that ward was absorbed into the then defunct Cheng San GRC.

Punggol East Single Member Constituency (Chinese: 榜鹅东单选区; Malay: Kawasan Undi Perseorangan Punggol East; Tamil: பொங்கோல் ஈஸ்ட் தனித்தொகுதி) is a Single Member Constituency located in the north-eastern area of Singapore. Despite its name, the ward does not cover the town of Punggol but rather its boundaries span the neighbourhood of Rivervale, the eastern area of Sengkang. This ward has been carved out during the 2011's General Election and was formerly a ward from the Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC.

On 12 December 2012, then MP for Punggol East SMC, Michael Palmer resigned after an extramarital affair was revealed.[1] A by-election was held on 26 January 2013, and Lee Li Lian of the Workers' Party was elected as MP.[2]

During the 2015 general elections, PAP's Charles Chong won in Punggol East SMC, replacing Lee Li Lian as MP for the constituency.[3]


The ward was previously belong to the Pasir Ris-Punggol Group Representation Constituency] when the division was first created in 2006. In 2011, the ward was carved out as a SMC, and it was the sole constituency to feature a three-cornered contest for the election (and also the first three-cornered contest since 2001, where it contested Bukit Timah SMC). The election was won by then-MP, Michael Palmer, who was the incumbent of the ward with 54.54% of the votes, beating WP's newcomer Lee Li Lian and SDA's secretary-general Desmond Lim, who garnered 41.01% and 4.45% of the votes, respectively. Lim was the only candidate to have garnered less than the 12.5% vote threshold, and thus lost the deposit.

Following Palmer's resignation on December, the ward was temporary substituted by Minister of State Teo Ser Luck, who was the MP of the neighbouring Pasir Ris-Pungggol GRC. On 10 January 2013, PAP unveiled their candidate for the by-election: Dr Koh Poh Koon, a 40-year-old colorectal surgeon from Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, who had joined the party only three weeks prior. Both WP's Lee and SDA's Lim had returned to contest the by-election. The election also featured a fourth candidate, the Secretary-general of Reform Party, Kenneth Jeyaretnam, who he previously contested West Coast Group Representation Constituency in the 2011 election.

There were two rounds of rallies in this by-election, Workers' Party's rally drew the most audiences amounting ranging 5,000 to 12,000 audiences, while Singapore Democratic Alliance using the social media and technology to draw audiences via a series of videos posted to YouTube.

During the vote counting, SDA's Desmond Lim officially conceded defeat.[4] Jeyaretnam and Lim both lost their election deposit in this by-election, with Lim as the only the second candidate to date whom as lost his deposit twice, after Harbans Singh of the United People's Front[5]. At 0.57%, Lim also set a record for the lowest percentage garnered in an election since post-independence Singapore.[6]

WP's Lee won the by-election with 16,038 votes, or 54.52% (Including overseas votes, the percentage of valid votes cast were 54.50%, or 16,045 votes), marking the second by-election where an opposition had won a parliament seat from the ruling party, after 1981. She was sworn in at the Parliament on 4 February 2013, and held her Meet-The-People session on the same day.[7]

Members of Parliament[edit]

Member of Parliament Party Dates Notes
Michael Palmer PAP 2011–2013 Resigned after an extramarital affair came to light, precipitating the Punggol-East by-election
Lee Li Lian WP 2013–2015
Charles Chong PAP 2015– Incumbent

Candidates and results[edit]

Elections in 2010s[edit]

General Election 2015: Punggol East
Party Candidate Votes % ±
PAP Charles Chong 16,957 51.76 +8.03
WP Lee Li Lian 15,801 48.24 -6.26
Majority 1,156 3.52
Rejected ballots 379 1.14 -0.26
Turnout 33,137 96.14 +1.83
Registered electors 34,466
PAP gain from WP Swing +6.83
By-Election 2013: Punggol East
Party Candidate Votes % ±
WP Lee Li Lian 16,045 54.50 +13.49
PAP Koh Poh Koon 12,875 43.73 -10.81
Reform Kenneth Jeyaretnam (Loses deposit) 353 1.20 N/A
SDA Desmond Lim Bak Chuan (Loses deposit) 168 0.57 -3.88
Margin of victory 3,170 10.77 -2.76
Rejected ballots 418 1.40 -0.3
Turnout 29,859 94.31 -0.99
Registered electors 31,659
WP gain from PAP Swing +12.15
General Election 2011: Punggol East
Party Candidate Votes % ±
PAP Michael Palmer 16,994 54.54 N/A
WP Lee Li Lian 12,777 41.01 N/A
SDA Desmond Lim Bak Chuan (Loses deposit) 1,387 4.45 N/A
Turnout 31,709 95.3 N/A
PAP win (new seat)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Speaker of Parliament Michael Palmer resigns over "grave mistake"". Channel NewsAsia. December 12, 2012. Retrieved January 28, 2013. 
  2. ^ "WP's Lee wins Punggol East by-election". Channel NewsAsia. January 26, 2013. 
  3. ^ Sim, Royston (12 September 2015). "GE2015: PAP's Charles Chong wins Punggol East SMC with 51.76 per cent of votes". The Straits Times. SPH. Retrieved 22 September 2015. 
  4. ^ "SDA's Lim concedes defeat". Channel NewsAsia. 26 January 2013. 
  5. ^ Candidates name list (H-I): Harbans Singh
  6. ^ "SDA scores worst result in post-independence history". www.asiaone.com. 
  7. ^ "WP's Lee Li Lian holds first Meet-the-People session". Channel NewsAsia. February 4, 2013. Retrieved February 7, 2013.