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PSP’s Hazel Poa and Leong Mun Wai to step down as party leaders to gear up for NCMP duties

SINGAPORE — Mr Leong Mun Wai and Ms Hazel Poa from the Progress Singapore Party (PSP), who are set to become Non-Constituency Members of Parliament (NCMP), will be relinquishing their leadership posts in the party. This is so that they can focus on their parliamentary duties.

Ms Hazel Poa (left) and Mr Leong Mun Wai (right) are no longer in leadership roles for the Progress Singapore Party but will remain as members of its Central Executive Committee.

Ms Hazel Poa (left) and Mr Leong Mun Wai (right) are no longer in leadership roles for the Progress Singapore Party but will remain as members of its Central Executive Committee.

SINGAPORE — Mr Leong Mun Wai and Ms Hazel Poa from the Progress Singapore Party (PSP), who are set to become Non-Constituency Members of Parliament (NCMP), will be relinquishing their leadership posts in the party. This is so that they can focus on their parliamentary duties. 

Mr Leong, 60, will be stepping down as the party’s assistant secretary-general while Ms Poa, 49, will no longer be its vice-chairman with immediate effect.

Speaking to TODAY, Mr Leong confirmed that the party’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) had made this decision.

“(Ms Poa and I) were asked to lighten our party responsibilities (and) we are totally in agreement with this arrangement,” he said. 

Mr Leong added that he and Ms Poa will just be members of the CEC.

“We are still CEC members and we are involved in various things still, but the party views the parliamentary duties as very important,” he said. 

Both Ms Poa and Mr Leong are part of PSP’s five-person team that contested for seats at West Coast Group Representation Constituency (GRC) and narrowly lost to the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) during the General Election on July 10. 

They were offered seats in Parliament as NCMPs because the West Coast GRC team was the losing opposition slate with the highest percentage of votes during the election. PSP then decided that they should take up the two seats offered under the NCMP scheme, which allows 12 opposition party Members of Parliament (MPs).

Mr Leong and Ms Poa will thus join the 10 elected MPs from the Workers’ Party in the House.  

In a message to PSP members on Sunday seen by TODAY, the party’s organising secretary Michael Chua said that the decision was made following a CEC meeting on July 17 and will take effect immediately. 

In the message, Mr Chua said that CEC member Francis Yuen — who was a candidate at Chua Chu Kang GRC and represented PSP in a televised debate during the election campaign — will be taking over Mr Leong’s post, while the vice-chairman role will remain vacant for now

“(Mr Yuen) will be planning a restructuring of the party to position the party for the future and begin the process of inducting younger members into roles of responsibility,” the message read. 

Mr Leong said that there is still work to be done both within the party as well as in preparation for when Parliament convenes.  

“Both on the party side and Parliament side, we have many things to do in order to meet the expectations that the voters have of us,” Mr Leong added. “So we tend to take everything very seriously.” 

He said that he and Ms Poa are “doing a lot of reading up and preparation at a moment”. 

When asked how both of them felt about being NCMPs, Mr Leong said: “We are very excited about it, but of course, the responsibilities are very heavy (and) that’s why we are preparing ourselves for that role.”

Earlier in January, PSP reshuffled its leadership less than a year after the party was officially registered in March last year. It is led by former PAP MP Tan Cheng Bock, 80.

At the time of the reshuffle, its assistant secretary-general Anthony Lee Yung Hwee, 40, was replaced by Mr Leong, and vice-chairman K S Singam, 82, was replaced by Ms Michelle Lee, 43. Ms Lee had contested Holland-Bukit Timah GRC in the 2011 General Election when she was with the Singapore Democratic Party.

About two months later, Ms Lee left the party to set up another political party Red Dot United, leaving the role of vice-chairman vacant. An undated announcement on PSP’s website then announced Ms Poa, its assistant treasurer, as the new vice-chairman. 

Ms Poa was later introduced as a PSP candidate in June for the General Election this year. She used to be the secretary-general of the National Solidarity Party and had contested in Chua Chu Kang GRC in 2011.

Related topics

Singapore General Election SGVotes2020 PSP NCMP Hazel Poa Leong Mun Wai

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