Updated 09:06 AM Nov 09, 2010
SINGAPORE - Minister of State for Trade and Industry and Manpower Lee Yi Shyan (picture) would "be happy but reluctant" to contest in single-seat ward Joo Chiat, where Mr Chan Soo Sen is the incumbent Member of Parliament.
Mr Lee, 48, was appointed as second adviser to Joo Chiat's grassroots organisation in 2007 - about a year after he was elected to Parliament - a move which had then fuelled speculation that he would contest the ward in the next General Election (GE) due by February 2012.
Mr Lee was speaking to reporters yesterday ahead of a ministerial visit to his Kampong Chai Chee ward when he was asked about the possibility again. In response, Mr Lee cited his grassroots leaders as a reason why he would be reluctant to leave his current constituency - even though he would be "happy" to do so.
"I never had second thoughts about going elsewhere because I owe it all my volunteers here, and my residents here," said Mr Lee, who added that a new sports hub integrated with the community centre will be built in Kampong Chai Chee, while the Bedok bus interchange will also be revamped.
Contacted by MediaCorp, Mr Chan, 54, said he has not received any word from the People's Action Party if he will be contesting in Joo Chiat in the GE.
Said Mr Chan, who is in his third term as MP: "My attitude towards the decision is that of absolute obedience. If my party asks me to stay in Joo Chiat, I will put up a good fight. However, if my party asks me to step down and give way to new blood, I will graciously do so and do my best to support whoever is the next contestant."
He added: "I will get Joo Chiat ready as if I am standing for election - that is my duty."