Posted by: bigtalksingapore | April 13, 2011

Singapore election system version 2.0

In the coming months ahead, Singapore will be holding its 2011 election. This time round, we may be seeing a monumental change in our political situation.

I can see three possibilities…

  • The ruling party PAP (People Action Party) win big with majority parliament seats. The alternative/ opposition parties win less than 5 parliament seats.
  • PAP win small with more than 5 parliament seats won by alternative parties.
  • PAP loses big with a freak election result of more than 50% of parliament seats won by alternative parties.

While I support the view that a larger alternative voice is needed in parliament, a freak election may not be good for Singaporean.  Investors confidence and economic growth may be negatively affect. Don’t want that to happen, do you ?

The better result would be that PAP win small with more than 5 parliament seats won by alternative parties. In this way, we allow the alternative parties to grow slowly and steadily, accumulating experience and proving their abilities to voters. We don’t want a situation where alternative parties win too big, become too confidence and too proud. They may not have enough experience and ability to take over the nation yet. So we should give them time.

How do we ensure a smooth development of Singapore one party system to the next phase ?

My answer, our current election need to be change because it is outdated. I would propose a new election system. This is how it works…

  • To make my explanation simple, let’s assume that the election boundaries are divided into 30 regions (big and small included).
  • A public lottery will be conducted one day before the first election date. The lottery will randomly divide the 30 regions into three groups.
  • The actual Election Day will be conducted over three days. No election activities and media promotion will be allowed during these three days.
  • In the first day of election, voters in the first group will vote. The result will be published in public media and websites on the same day.
  • Voters of the second and third group will vote and result published on the second and third days respectively.
  • Final result will be out on the third day.
  • That’s it, simple enough ?

What are the advantages of splitting the election over three days ?

Let me explain first from the alternative parties’ point of view..

  • Many voters want an alternative voice in parliament that is helpful to the development of Singapore political arena. Especially when they start talking about building nuclear plant in Singapore.
  • Voters may have the feeling that if they vote for the alternative parties, it may cause a freak election that put the alternative parties in power when they are not ready.
  • To play safe and alleviate the fear of freak election, many voters play safe and vote for the ruling parties. This is the safest route but not the one that they wanted.
  • With the new system, if the election results of the first and second day turns out to be against the wishes of most Singaporean, voters can make the hard choice to do a final correction.

From the ruling party point of view…

  • Voters may assume that the PAP is probably going to win big as it always does in the past.
  • Voters may vote for the alternative parties based on the above assumption, believing that their vote is too insignificant to create a freak election.
  • A freak election occurred,  causing PAP to lost majority power.
  • Alternative parties may not be ready to take over the government yet.
  • With the new election system, voters will have the chance to rectify the situation on the second and third day if needed.

This system will be beneficial to the voters, the ruling party, the alternative parties and the stability of Singapore political development.


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