N-Day Rally on Sunday

Prime Minister Lee Hsien LoongÂ’ at 2014 National Day Rally (NDR) in ITE College Central.
PHOTO: The Straits Times

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will deliver the National Day Rally speech on Sunday.

He will speak first in Malay and Mandarin from 6.45pm to 7.30pm, then in English from 8pm to 10pm, the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said in a statement yesterday.

For the third year in a row, the rally - the PM's annual address on the state of the nation - will take place at the ITE Headquarters and College Central.

It can be viewed on several platforms, including Mr Lee's social media accounts, local television and radio stations, and The Straits Times' digital platforms.

In its statement, the PMO advised citizens looking for more information on government policies over the last year to watch videos on healthcare, housing, education, transport, the quality of life and cost of living at www.gov.sg.

They can also use the hashtag, #ndrsg, in their online posts and tweets about the Rally, it said.

Also yesterday, government feedback unit Reach said that Singaporeans can share their views on the Rally, while it is happening live, on its website. It said it will be organising several sessions to gather feedback after the Rally, including a public forum, a Facebook question-and-answer session and radio talk shows.

Political watchers expect a general election to be called within weeks of Sunday's National Day Rally speech. The ruling People's Action Party has already begun introducing its new candidates and the opposition parties have stepped up their walkabouts.

The last time a Rally came in the midst of election season was in 1991. Then, newly appointed prime minister Goh Chok Tong announced new programmes like the $5 billion Medifund, and said he would call a general election soon.

Political analysts expect Mr Lee's Rally speech on Sunday to be one that sets the stage for the country's next 50 years, given that it has just celebrated its Golden Jubilee.

Singapore Management University law don Eugene Tan suggested that there could be a bonus for all Singaporeans to round off the SG50 celebrations. He added: "Given that we are in election season, we can expect the Rally speech to have the subtle sub-text of electioneering."

This article was first published on August 18, 2015. Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to straitstimes.com for more stories.