We do see cross-overs from time to time and this time we have one Jose Raymond, the former press secretary of Vivian Balakrishnan joining the ranks of SPP. The grass is apparently greener at Potong Pasir and Bishan-Toa Payoh.
PAP does not treat their defectors lightly – just look at how they treated Dr. Tan Cheng Bock. The government shifted the goalpost, so to speak, so as to deny Bocky of any chance of being the president.
Mr Raymond at 45 makes a political debut and has decided to no longer serve his former political masters. He may not pose a serious threat to the PAP for now, but gleaning from his Facebook posts, he seems confident that he can reinvigorate the waning SPP and help them regain a foothold in parliament, a feat that has only been achieved by the party’s founder Mr Chiam See Tong.
Mr. Raymond, who started volunteering with the SPP two months ago, has been participating in SPP’s initiatives in Bishan-Toa Payoh Group Representation Constituency and Potong Pasir SMC.
On January 18, the Facebook page of Singapore People’s Party (SPP) showed photos of Mr Steve Chia, long-time member of the National Solidarity Party (NSP) as well as Mr Jose Raymond, former Singapore Environment Council executive director. Mr Chia and Mr Raymond were wearing the party’s colors and were shown joining the party’s walkabouts along with chairman Lina Chiam and other members of the SPP.
Mr. Raymond was a journalist and served as press secretary to Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, former Minister for the Environment and Water Resources. He is currently finishing his master’s degree in Public Administration at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. He is the vice president of the Singapore Swimming Association, and is also with the Chiam See Tong Sports Foundation as deputy chairman. The foundation is geared toward helping young people in need to better themselves through sports.
Mr. Raymond has not commented on his new party affiliation but said on Facebook: “It doesn’t matter which side of the political spectrum you belong to. It also doesn’t matter which party colour you support. It is also immaterial if you are pro-PAP or pro-Opposition. What’s most important is that we are pro-Singapore every time, all the time.”