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'Sorry, no posters and banners': Ng Kok Song says he doesn't have 'party machinery' to help with campaign

'Sorry, no posters and banners': Ng Kok Song says he doesn't have 'party machinery' to help with campaign
Election posters on a lamp post in Pioneer (left), Ng Kok Song mingling with patrons at Amoy Street Food Centre (right).
PHOTO: AsiaOne

The Presidential Election is in full swing, with the three candidates locked in campaign mode.

Walk down the street, and you will notice election posters of Tharman Shanmugaratnam and Tan Kin Lian on lamp posts in your neighbourhood.

But posters with Ng Kok Song's image are conspicuously absent. 

Speaking to reporters in a doorstep interview on Wednesday (Aug 23), Ng said that he has a "practical" reason for not putting up posters or banners.

"I don't have the manpower resources, or the party machinery to hang up posters on lamp posts all over the island," said the 75-year-old former chief investment officer of GIC, adding that he will still hand out pamphlets during his walkabouts.

"I have very limited resources. Therefore, I ask Singaporeans who are looking for posters and banners to understand my situation. Sorry, no posters and banners."

Ng previously told AsiaOne that he is politically neutral even with his 45 years in public service. 

"I was never a member of the PAP (People's Action Party). I was never a member of any political party," he said in an interview then.

In the doorstop interview before his walkabout at Amoy Street Food Centre today (Aug 23), Ng also said that he wants his election campaign to be "environmentally friendly".

"What's the point of making posters and banners, hang them up for a few days, take them down and then send them to be destroyed as waste?" said Ng.

"Ask that question to Mr Tharman," replied the presidential candidate when asked if he is suggesting that his election opponent is not being environmentally sustainable.

Ng said his campaign strategy is to rely on social media to "communicate better with the younger generation of Singaporeans", adding that he was "quite surprised" to find out that one of his TikTok videos has reached more than two million users.

"I feel that our young Singaporeans can share my message and talk about me to their parents and grandparents," said Ng.


Accompanied by his fiancee Sybil Lau, Ng greeted dozens of office workers during his walkabout at Amoy Street Food Centre.

Speaking to AsiaOne after taking a selfie with the presidential candidate, 24-year-old engineer Le Yi said that she knew about Ng from his TikTok videos.

"He has a 'nice guy' vibe. A nice and genuine smile too," she said, while her colleague, 26-year-old Justin Lim, feels that Ng is a "loveable and cute guy".

'The president must have credibility to exercise soft power': Ng

Earlier in the day, Ng's opponent Tan Kin Lian said that the president has "tremendous soft powers" and likened the role to that of a monarch.

Tan added he believes he can achieve his three goals if he is elected - bring down the cost of living, ensure affordable housing for all and provide a "sense of stability"- through regular meetings with the Prime Minister to "convey the feelings and the aspirations of the people".

When asked about Tan's comments in the doorstop interview on Wednesday, Ng said for a president to exercise soft power, he must have "some expertise and credibility". 

"That soft power has to be exercised within closed doors. It is not the responsibility of the president to make policies, and to make trouble for the government," he added.

ALSO READ: PE2023: How much does it cost for a candidate to run for president?

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