People's Action Party

The People's Action Party (abbreviation: PAP) is a major conservative centre-right[8] political party in Singapore and is one of the three contemporary political parties represented in Parliament, alongside the opposition Workers' Party (WP) and Progress Singapore Party (PSP).[9][10]

People's Action Party
Malay nameParti Tindakan Rakyat
Chinese name人民行动党
Rénmín Xíngdòng Dǎng
Tamil nameமக்களின் செயல் கட்சி
Makkaḷin Ceyal Kaṭci
ChairmanHeng Swee Keat
Secretary-GeneralLee Hsien Loong
Vice ChairmanMasagos Zulkifli
Deputy Secretary-GeneralLawrence Wong
Assistant Secretaries-General
Founded21 November 1954 (1954-11-21)
Preceded byMalayan Forum
Succeeded by (Malaysia)
HeadquartersBlock 57B New Upper Changi Road #01-1402 Singapore 463057
Youth wingYoung PAP
Political positionCentre-right[8]
ColoursWhite, red, blue
SloganOur Lives, Our Jobs, Our Future
Governing bodyCentral Executive Committee
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Initially founded as a traditional centre-left party in 1954, the leftist faction was soon expelled from the party in 1961 by Lee Kuan Yew in the midst of Singapore's merger with Malaysia, desiring to move the party's ideology towards the centre after its first electoral victory in 1959.[11] Beginning in the 1960s, the party henceforth began to move towards the centre-right.[12] Following the 1965 agreement which led to Singapore's expulsion from the Malaysian federation, almost the entire opposition except for the WP boycotted the following elections in 1968 in response to their initial incredulity towards independence, thereafter allowing the PAP the opportunity to exercise exclusivity over its governance of national institutions and become the largest political party in the country.[13]

From 1965 to 1981, the PAP was the only political force represented in Parliament until it saw its first electoral defeat to the WP at a by-election in the constituency of Anson. Nevertheless, the PAP has not seen its hegemony effectively threatened and has always exceeded 60% of the votes and 80% of the seats in all subsequent elections. The PAP is the longest, uninterrupted governing party among multiparty parliamentary democracies in the world at 63 years as of 2022, and the second in history after Mexico's Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) which led for 71 years from 1929 to 2000.[14]

Positioned on the centre-right of Singapore politics, the PAP is ideologically socially conservative and economically liberal. The party generally favours free-market economics, having turned Singapore's economy into one of the world's freest and most open,[15] but has at times engaged in state interventionism reminiscent of welfare capitalist policies. Socially, it supports communitarianism and civic nationalism, with the cohesion of the country's main ethnic groups of the Chinese, Malay and Indian into a united Singaporean national identity forming many of its policies.[16] On foreign policy, it favours maintaining a strong and robust military, serving as a purportedly indispensable guarantor of the country's continued sovereignty within the context of its strategic position for international finance and trade.[17][18]


Lee Kuan Yew, the first Prime Minister of Singapore and one of the founders of the People's Action Party

Lee Kuan Yew, Toh Chin Chye and Goh Keng Swee were involved in the Malayan Forum, a London-based student activist group that was against colonial rule in Malaya in the 1940s and early 1950s.[19][20] Upon returning to Singapore, the group met regularly to discuss approaches to attain independence in Malayan territories and started looking for like-minded individuals to start a political party. Journalist S. Rajaratnam was introduced to Lee by Goh.[21] Lee was also introduced to several English-educated left-wing students and Chinese-educated union and student leaders while working on the Fajar sedition trial and the National Service riot case.[22]


The PAP was officially registered as a political party on 21 November 1954. Convenors of the party include a group of trade unionists, lawyers and journalists such as Lee Kuan Yew, Abdul Samad Ismail, Toh Chin Chye, Devan Nair, S. Rajaratnam, Chan Chiaw Thor, Fong Swee Suan, Tann Wee Keng and Tann Wee Tiong.[23] The political party was led by Lee Kuan Yew as its secretary-general, with Toh Chin Chye as its founding chairman. Other party officers include Tann Wee Tiong, Lee Gek Seng, Ong Eng Guan and Tann Wee Keng.[24]

The PAP first contested the 1955 general election in which 25 of 32 seats in the legislature were up for election. In this election, the PAP's four candidates gained much support from the trade union members and student groups such as the University Socialist Club, who canvassed for them.[25] The party won three seats, one by its leader Lee Kuan Yew for the Tanjong Pagar division and one by PAP co-founder Lim Chin Siong for the Bukit Timah division.[26][27] Then 22 years old unionist Lim Chin Siong was and remained the youngest Assemblyman ever to be elected to office. The election was won by the Labour Front headed by David Marshall.[28]

In April 1956, Lim and Lee represented the PAP at the London Constitutional Talks along with Chief Minister David Marshall which ended in failure as the British declined to grant Singapore internal self-government. On 7 June 1956, Marshall, disappointed with the constitutional talks, stepped down as Chief Minister as he had pledged to do so earlier if self-governance was not achieved. He was replaced by Lim Yew Hock, another Labour Front member.[29] Lim pursued a largely anti-communist campaign and managed to convince the British to make a definite plan for self-government. The Constitution of Singapore was revised accordingly in 1958, replacing the Rendel Constitution with one that granted Singapore self-government and the ability for its own population to fully elect its Legislative Assembly.

PAP and left-wing members who were communists were criticised for inciting riots in the mid-1950s.[30][31] Lim Chin Siong, Fong Swee Suan and Devan Nair as well as several unionists were detained by the police after the Chinese middle schools riots.[32] Lim Chin Siong was placed under solitary confinement for close to a year, away from his other PAP colleagues, as they were placed in the Medium Security Prison (MSP) instead.[33]

The number of PAP members imprisoned rose in August 1957, when PAP members from the trade unions (viewed as "communist or pro-communist") won half the seats in the Central Executive Committee (CEC). The "moderate" CEC members, including Lee Kuan Yew, Toh Chin Chye and others, refused to take their appointments in the CEC. Yew Hock's government again made a sweeping round of arrests, imprisoning all the "communist" members, before the "moderates" re-assumed their office.[34]

Following this, the PAP decided to re-assert ties with the labour faction of Singapore in the hope of securing the votes of working-class Chinese Singaporeans, many of whom were supporters of the jailed unionists. Lee Kuan Yew convinced the incarcerated union leaders to sign documents to state their support for the party and its policies, promising to release the jailed members of the PAP when the party came to power in the next elections.[35] Ex-Barisan Sosialis member Tan Jing Quee claims that Lee was secretly in collusion with the British to stop Lim Chin Siong and the labour supporters from attaining power because of their huge popularity. Quee also states that Lim Yew Hock deliberately provoked the students into rioting and then had the labour leaders arrested.[36] Greg Poulgrain of Griffiths University argued that "Lee Kuan Yew was secretly a party with Lim Yew Hock in urging the Colonial Secretary to impose the subversives ban in making it illegal for former political detainees to stand for election".[36] Lee Kuan Yew eventually accused Lim Chin Siong and his supporters of being communists working for the Communist United Front, but evidence of Lim being a communist cadre was a matter of debate as many documents have yet to be declassified.[37][38]

First years in government

The PAP eventually won the 1959 general election under Lee Kuan Yew's leadership.[39] The election was also the first one to produce a fully elected parliament and a cabinet wielding powers of full internal self-government. The party has won a majority of seats in every general election since then. Lee, who became the first Prime Minister,[40] requested for the release of the PAP left-wing members to form the new cabinet.[41]

Great Split of 1961

In 1961, disagreements on the proposed merger plan to form Malaysia and long-standing internal party power struggle led to the split of the left-wing group from the PAP.[42][43][44]

Although the "Communist" faction had been frozen out of ever taking over the PAP, other problems had begun to arise internally. Ong Eng Guan, the former Mayor of the City Council after PAP's victory in the 1957 Singapore City Council election, presented a set of "16 Resolutions" to revisit some issues previously explored by Chin Siong's faction of the PAP: abolishing the PPSO, revising the Constitution, and changing the method of selecting cadre members.[45]:82

Although Ong's 16 Resolutions originated from the left-wing faction led by Lim Chin Siong, that faction had only reluctantly asked the PAP leadership to clarify its position on them,[46] as they still thought that the party with Lee Kuan Yew at the helm was a better alternative than Ong who was regarded as mercurial and a tyrant.[33] However, Lee took the stance taken by the left-wing PAP members as a lack of confidence in his leadership. This issue caused a rift between the "moderate" PAP members (led by Lee) and the "left-wing" faction (led by Lim).

Ong was then expelled, and he resigned his Assembly seat to challenge the government to a by-election in Hong Lim in April 1961, where he won 73.3% of the vote.[47] This was despite the fact that Lee Kuan Yew had made a secret alliance with Fong Chong Pik, the leader of the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM), to get the CPM cadres to support the PAP in the by-election.[46]

Barisan Sosialis

The breakaway group of members formed the Barisan Sosialis with Lim Chin Siong as secretary-general.[48] Aside from the Chinese union leaders, lawyers Thampoe Thamby Rajah and Tann Wee Tiong,[49] several members from the University Socialist Club such as James Puthucheary and Poh Soo Kai joined the party.[50] 35 of 51 branches of the PAP and 19 of 23 branch secretaries defected to Barisan.

Merger years 1963–1965

After gaining independence from Britain, Singapore joined the federation of Malaysia in 1963. Although the PAP was the ruling party in the state of Singapore, the PAP functioned as an opposition party at the federal level in the larger Malaysian political landscape. At that time and until the 2018 general election, the federal government in Kuala Lumpur was controlled by a coalition led by the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO). However, the prospect that the PAP might rule Malaysia agitated UMNO. The PAP's decision to contest federal parliamentary seats outside Singapore and the UMNO decision to contest seats within Singapore breached an unspoken agreement to respect each other's spheres of influence and aggravated PAP–UMNO relations. The clash of personalities between PAP leader Lee Kuan Yew and Malaysian Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman resulted in a crisis and led to Rahman forcing Singapore to leave Malaysia on 9 August 1965. Upon independence, the nascent People's Action Party of Malaya, which had been registered in Malaysia on 10 March 1964, had its registration cancelled on 9 September 1965, just a month after Singapore's exit. Those with the now non-existent party applied to register People's Action Party, Malaya which was again rejected by the Malaysian government, before settling with the Democratic Action Party.

Post-independence, 1965 to present

A PAP election rally at Tampines Stadium

The PAP has held an overwhelming majority of seats in the Parliament of Singapore since 1966, when the opposition Barisan Sosialis (Socialist Front) resigned from Parliament after winning 13 seats following the 1963 general election, which took place months after a number of their leaders had been arrested in Operation Coldstore based on accusations of being communists.[36] It subsequently achieved a monopoly in an expanding parliament (winning every parliamentary seat) for the next four elections (1968, 1972, 1976 and 1980). Opposition parties returned to the legislature at a 1981 by-election. The 1984 general election was the first election in 21 years in which opposition parties won seats. From then until 2006, the PAP faced four opposition MPs at most. Opposition parties did not win more than four parliamentary seats from 1984 until 2011 when the Workers' Party won six seats and took away a Group Representation Constituency (GRC) for the first time for any opposition party.

Even so, it still holds a supermajority in the legislature, to the point that Singapore is effectively a dominant party system. With its supermajority, the PAP has always had the ability to amend the Constitution of Singapore without much obstruction, including the introduction of multi-member constituencies under the Group representation constituency (GRC) system or Nominated Member of Parliament (NMPs), which has helped strengthened the government's dominance and control of Parliament.[51]

Leadership transitions

The longtime governing party of Singapore, spans both past and present, but notably occurred in the mid-1980s where the first generation of PAP leaders in the CEC and the Cabinet of Singapore ceded power to a second generation of leaders.

First to second generation

By 1984, the "old guard" (first generation of party leaders) had been governing Singapore for approximately a quarter of a century. Aging leadership was a key concern, and the Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew sought to groom younger leaders. In a speech on 29 September 1984, Lee argued that though the first generation of leaders was still "alert and fully in charge", to hang on to power until they had become feeble would allow power to be wrested from them, with no say in who their successors were.[52]

On 30 September, at the Ordinary Party Conference, power was transferred to the second generation of leaders, who were elected to the Central Executive Committee in place of all the old CEC members; of the 14-member CEC, only Lee Kuan Yew remained the only "old guard" leader.[52]

According to a report to the Library of Congress, the old guard were confident in their "rectitude" and discretion in using their extensive political powers for Singapore's common good, but were not as confident in the next generation in doing so. Various limits on executive power were considered, in order to minimise the chances of corruption. These included a popularly elected President of Singapore with substantial, nonceremonial powers.[53] This particular reform was enacted with a constitutional amendment in 1991.

The old guard also sought to eschew the use of PAP as a central political institution, seeking to "depoliticise" and disperse power among society, and sought to include low-level community leaders in government. A policy of cross-fertilisation was enacted: exchange of leaders, "elites" and talent would take place between private and government sectors, civilian and military segments of society, and between the party and the National Trades Union Congress.[53]

Second to third generation

The next generation of leaders in the late 1980s was split between the factions of then Brigadier General Lee Hsien Loong and the older, more-experienced Goh Chok Tong. Lee Hsien Loong was supported by bureaucrats in the Ministry of Defence and army colleagues in the Singapore Armed Forces;[53] Goh Chok Tong had more influence in the Singapore Civil Service, the Cabinet and the government-linked corporations.[54]

Lee Kuan Yew himself remained Prime Minister and in the CEC until 1990, when he stepped down in favour of Goh Chok Tong as PM. Lee Hsien Loong became PM in 2004.

Fourth Generation

On 23 November 2018, fourth-generation leadership members, then–Minister for Finance Heng Swee Keat and then–Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing wre elected as the First and Second Assistant Secretaries-General respectively, the second and third highest positions of the party. They had replaced then - Assistant Secretary-Generals Teo Chee Hean and Tharman Shanmugaratnam. A significant step of the leadership transition from the third-generation leaders to the fourth-generation leaders.

On 1 May 2019, Heng Swee Keat was appointed the new and sole Deputy Prime Minister, replacing Teo and Tharman. He was then widely seen as the 4th and next Prime Minister and Secretary-General of PAP succeeding incumbent Lee Hsien Loong. However on 8 April 2021, Heng surprisingly announced he would step down as the fourth-generation leader and step aside to pave way for younger and healthier leaders to take over the leadership and stressed that health and age as concerns of this decision. After his decision, several Cabinet members were seen as the possible candidates to succeed Heng, ranging from Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong, Minister for Health Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Education Chan Chun Sing.

On 14 April 2022, Finance Minister Lawrence Wong was selected as the new leader of the PAP's fourth-generation (4G) team, succeeding Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat who had stepped down as 4G leader.[55] Wong received an "overwhelming majority" of support in the consultation process, surpassing that of other nominees. [56] His candidacy was unanimously endorsed by the cabinet and subsequently, by the PAP MPs at a party caucus on 14 April.[57]


People's Action Party activist during the 2011 general election
People's Action Party headquarters in New Upper Changi Road

During its initial years, the party had adopted a traditional Leninist form of party organisation, together with a vanguard cadre from its labour-leaning faction. The PAP Executive later expelled the leftist faction in 1961, bringing the ideological basis of the party into the centre and later in the 1960s moving further to the right.

In the beginning, there were about 500 so-called temporary cadres appointed,[58] however the current number of cadres is unknown, with the register of cadres being kept confidential. In 1988, Wong Kan Seng revealed that there were more than 1,000 cadres.

Cadre members have the right to attend party conferences and to vote for and elect and to be elected into the Central Executive Committee (CEC), the pinnacle of party leaders.

To become a cadre, a party member must be first nominated by the MP in their branch. The candidate will then undergo three sessions of interview, each with four to five ministers or MPs and the appointment is then made by the CEC. About 100 candidates are nominated each year.[59]

Central Executive Committee and Secretary-General

Political power in the party is concentrated in the CEC, led by the secretary-general. The secretary-general of the PAP is the leader of the party. Due to PAP's electoral victories in every general election since 1959, the prime minister of Singapore has been by convention the secretary-general of the PAP since 1959. Key appointments in the CEC are usually Cabinet members.

From 1957 onward, the rules laid down that the outgoing CEC should recommend a list of candidates from which the cadre members can then vote for the next CEC. This has recently changed so that the CEC nominates eight members and the party caucus selects the remaining ten.

Historically, the position of Secretary-General was not considered for the office of Prime Minister, but rather the Central Executive Committee held an election to choose the prime minister. There was a contest between PAP Secretary-General Lee Kuan Yew and PAP Treasurer Ong Eng Guan, prior to 1959. Lee subsequently won the leadership and was inaugurated as the first prime minister of Singapore.[60]

HQ Executive Committee

The next lower level committee is the HQ Executive Committee (HQ EXCO) which performs the party's administration and oversees 14 sub-committees.[61]

The sub-committees are the following:

  1. Branch Appointments and Relations
  2. Constituency Relations
  3. Information and Feedback
  4. New Media
  5. Malay Affairs
  6. Membership Recruitment and Cadre Selection
  7. PAP Awards
  8. Political Education
  9. Publicity and Publication
  10. Social and Recreational
  11. Women's Wing (WW)
  12. Young PAP (YP)
  13. PAP Seniors Group (PAP.SG)
  14. PAP Policy Forum (PPF)

Young PAP and internet presence

The Young PAP is the youth-wing of the party, serving as a youth organisation for young adults and students in Singapore who support the PAP and have an interest in politics.[62] The incumbent chairman of the youth-wing is Janil Puthucheary.[63][64][65]

The YP's predecessor, the PAP Youth Committee was established in 1986, under Lee Hsien Loong's tenure as Chairman, then a Singapore Armed Forces Brigadier-General. All PAP members under the age of 35 were grouped under the Youth Committee.

In 1993, the Youth Committee was renamed the Young PAP. In an effort to attract members, then Chairman George Yeo, said that people joining the YP could take positions different from central party leadership. The age limit was raised from 35 to 40.[66] Memberships are issued through the PAP branches under each constituency in Singapore.[67]

By 2005, the committee had grown to more than 6,000 members.[68] In 2010, then Vice-Chairman Zaqy Mohamad said the YP attracts over 1200 new members that year, an increase on the 1000 new members in 2009.[69]

Since 1995, the youth-wing of the PAP has had an internet presence that aims to "correct 'misinformation' about Singapore politics or culture".[70] Young PAP is also in charge of several online websites since 1995 to create an online presence for the party, under the urging of then Minister for Information and the Arts George Yeo.[71]

In February 2007, it was reported by The Straits Times that the PAP's new media committee chaired by Minister Ng Eng Hen, had initiated an effort to counter critics anonymously on the Internet "as it was necessary for the PAP to have a voice on cyberspace".[72]

The initiative was divided by two sub-committees, one of which was in charge of strategising the campaigns and is co-headed by Minister Lui Tuck Yew and MP Zaqy Mohamad. The other sub-committee—new media capabilities group led by MPs Baey Yam Keng and Josephine Teo executed the strategies. The initiative was set up after the 2006 general election and also included around 20 IT-savvy PAP activists.[72]

After popular forum Sintercom was shut down in 2001, the Young PAP offered their own forum for moderated discussions.[73] They have since set up various blogs and social media accounts with multimedia content to engage the masses.[74][75][76]


Asian democracy

The PAP has often set forth the idea of Asian democracy and values, drawing from a notion of Asian culture and Confucianism to construct ideological bulwarks as an alternative to Western democracy. Nevertheless, the presence of many aspects of liberal democracy in Singapore's public policy exists, such as the recognition of democratic institutions and the rule of law. Professor Hussin Mutalib from the National University of Singapore (NUS) opines that for Lee Kuan Yew, "Singapore would be better off without Western-style liberal democracy".[77]

Consequently, the governance of the PAP has occasionally been characterised by some observers especially in the West as relatively "semi-authoritarian" or "nanny-like" by "liberal democratic standards", with the introduction of unique laws such as banning the sales of chewing gum in 1992 for cleanliness purposes.[51]

According to Kenneth Paul Tan from the NUS, it proclaimed that the reason many Singaporeans continue to vote for the PAP are due to the fact that economic considerations, pragmatism and stability triumphs over accountability and checks and balances by opposition parties.[78] It has also been noted that despite the PAP having effective control over the state apparatus, they have "proven themselves" to Singaporeans as being much more transparent than risk having an alternative party govern the country; Singapore has been considered as being one of the least corrupt countries in the world by international observers such as Transparency International.[79]

Indeed, many political observers has added that many Singaporeans willingly accept this arrangement; by conceding some rights of personal liberty, in return, the party that has run Singapore since its founding, delivers progress and predictability. The PAP has won significant genuine support amongst the people for rapidly developing the country, as well as overseeing economic success and stability after the often turbulent periods prior to its independence.[80] Accordingly, this has led many Singaporeans into becoming highly risk-averse in voting for other parties due to their perception that it may led to a decreased prosperity of the country.[80]

Economic policies

The party economic ideology has always accepted the need for some welfare spending, and pragmatic economic interventionism. However, free-market policies have been popular since the 1980s as part of the wider implementation of a meritocracy in civil society and Singapore frequently ranks extremely highly on indices of economic freedom published by economically liberal organisations such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Singapore is also the only Asian country with the top AAA sovereign rating from the "Big Three" credit rating agencies of S&P, Moody's and Fitch.

Lee Kuan Yew once said in 1992: "Through Hong Kong watching, I concluded that state welfare and subsidies blunted the individual's drive to succeed. I watched with amazement the ease with which Hong Kong workers adjusted their salaries upwards in boom times and downwards in recessions. I resolved to reverse course on the welfare policies which my party had inherited or copied from British Labour Party policies".[81]

Social policies

Since the early years of the PAP's rule, the idea of survival has been a central theme of Singaporean politics. According to Diane Mauzy and R. S. Milne, most analysts of Singapore have discerned four major ideologies of the PAP, namely pragmatism, meritocracy, multiracialism and Asian values or communitarianism.[82]

In January 1991, the PAP introduced the White Paper on Shared Values which tried to create a national ideology and institutionalise Asian values.

At an Institute of Policy Studies dialogue held on 2 July 2015, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spoke about the need to maintain a Jeffersonian natural aristocracy in the system to instill a culture of respect and to avoid anarchy.[83]

Views on other ideologies

The party is deeply suspicious of communist political ideologies despite a brief joint alliance with the pro-labour co-founders of the PAP during the party's early years, who were eventually accused of being communists. In 2015, the party was seen by some observers to have adopted a left-of-centre tack in certain areas in order to remain electorally dominant.[84]

The socialism practised by the PAP during its first few decades in power was of a pragmatic kind as characterised by the party's rejection of nationalisation. According to Chan Heng Chee, by the late 1970s the intellectual credo of the government rested explicitly upon a philosophy of self-reliance, similar to the rugged individualism of the American brand of capitalism. Despite this, the PAP still claimed to be a socialist party, pointing out its regulation of the private sector, activist intervention in the economy and social policies as evidence of this.[85] In 1976, the PAP resigned from the Socialist International after the Dutch Labour Party had proposed to expel the party due to its shift in ideology.[86]


The PAP symbol (which is a red thunderbolt and blue circle on white) stands for action inside multicultural unity. It also appears on party flags on parades. PAP members at party rallies have customarily worn a uniform of white shirts and white trousers which symbolises incorruptibility and purity of the party's ideologies of the government.[87]


List of chairmen

Portrait Name
Term of office Time in office
Toh Chin Chye
(10 December 1921 – 3 February 2012)
21 November 1954 5 January 1981 26 years, 45 days
Ong Teng Cheong
(22 January 1936 – 8 February 2002)
5 January 1981 16 August 1993
12 years, 223 days
Tony Tan
(born 7 February 1940)
1 September 1993 3 December 2004 11 years, 93 days
Lim Boon Heng
(born 18 November 1947)
3 December 2004 1 June 2011 6 years, 180 days
Khaw Boon Wan
(born 8 December 1952)
1 June 2011 23 November 2018 7 years, 175 days
Gan Kim Yong
(born 9 February 1959)
23 November 2018 26 November 2022 4 years, 3 days
Heng Swee Keat
(born 15 April 1961)
26 November 2022 Incumbent 67 days

List of secretaries-general

Portrait Name
Term of office Time in office Refs
Lee Kuan Yew
(16 September 1923 – 23 March 2015)
21 November 1954 3 August 1957 2 years, 255 days [88][89]
T. T. Rajah
(28 December 1919 – 13 March 1996)
13 August 1957 3 September 1957 21 days [90][91]
Lee Kuan Yew
(16 September 1923 – 23 March 2015)
20 October 1957 14 November 1992 35 years, 25 days [92][93]
Goh Chok Tong
(born 20 May 1941)
15 November 1992 6 November 2004 11 years, 357 days [93][94]
Lee Hsien Loong
(born 10 February 1952)
7 November 2004 Incumbent 18 years, 86 days [94]

Central Executive Committee

As of 26 November 2022, the Central Executive Committee comprises the following members:[95]

Title Name
Chairman Heng Swee Keat
Vice-Chairman Masagos Zulkifli
Secretary-General Lee Hsien Loong
Deputy Secretary-General Lawrence Wong
Assistant Secretaries-General Chan Chun Sing
Desmond Lee
Treasurer K. Shanmugam
Assistant Treasurer Ong Ye Kung
Organising Secretaries Grace Fu
Edwin Tong[lower-alpha 1]
Members Alex Yeo[lower-alpha 2]
Cheryl Chan[lower-alpha 2]
Indranee Rajah
Josephine Teo[lower-alpha 1]
Ng Chee Meng[lower-alpha 2]
Tan Chuan Jin
Tan See Leng[lower-alpha 2]
Vivian Balakrishnan

Current Members of Parliament

Single Member Constituency

No Name Constituency Division Length of service (cumulative) Notes
1 Murali Pillai Bukit Batok SMC Bukit Batok 2016 – present -
2 Liang Eng Hwa Bukit Panjang SMC Bukit Panjang 2006 – present -
3 Amy Khor Hong Kah North SMC Hong Kah North 2001 – present Senior Minister of State for Transport, and Sustainability and the Environment
4 Henry Kwek Kebun Baru SMC Kebun Baru 2020 – present -
5 Tin Pei Ling MacPherson SMC MacPherson 2011 – present -
6 Gan Siow Huang Marymount SMC Marymount 2020 – present Minister of State for Education and Manpower
7 Lim Biow Chuan Mountbatten SMC Mountbatten 2006 – present -
8 Patrick Tay Pioneer SMC Pioneer 2011 – present -
9 Sitoh Yih Pin Potong Pasir SMC Potong Pasir 2011 – present -
10 Sun Xueling Punggol West SMC Punggol West 2015 – present Minister of State for Social and Family Development and Home Affairs
11 Melvin Yong Radin Mas SMC Radin Mas 2020 – present -
12 Yip Hon Weng Yio Chu Kang SMC Yio Chu Kang 2020 – present -
13 Grace Fu Yuhua SMC Yuhua 2006 – present Minister for Sustainability and the Environment

4 Member Group Constituency

No Name Constituency Division Length of service (cumulative) Notes
1 Ng Eng Hen Bishan–Toa Payoh GRCToa Payoh Central 2001 – present Minister for Defence
2 Chee Hong Tat Toa Payoh West – Thomson 2015 – present Senior Minister of State for Finance and Transport
3 Chong Kee Hiong Bishan East – Thomson 2015 – present -
4 Saktiandi Supaat Toa Payoh East – Novena 2015 – present -
5 Gan Kim Yong Chua Chu Kang GRCChoa Chu Kang 2001 – present Minister for Trade and Industry
6 Low Yen Ling Bukit Gombak 2011 – present Minister of State at the Ministries of Culture, Community and Youth and Trade and Industry
7 Don Wee Boon Hong Brickland 2020 – present -
8 Zhulkarnain Abdul Rahim Keat Hong 2020 – present -
9 Vivian Balakrishnan Holland–Bukit Timah GRCCashew 2006 – present Minister for Foreign Affairs
10 Sim Ann Bukit Timah 2011 – present Senior Minister of State for National Development and Foreign Affairs
11 Christopher de Souza Ulu Pandan 2006 – present Deputy Speaker of Parliament
12 Edward Chia Zhenghua 2020 – present -
13 Josephine Teo Jalan Besar GRCKreta Ayer – Kim Seng 2006 – present Minister of Communication and Information and Second Minister of Home Affairs
14 Heng Chee How Whampoa 2001 – present Senior Minister of State for Defence
15 Denise Phua Kampong Glam 2006 – present -
16 Wan Rizal Wan Zakariah Kolam Ayer 2020 – present -
17 Lawrence Wong Marsiling–Yew Tee GRCLimbang 2011 – present Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance
18 Alex Yam Yew Tee 2011 – present -
19 Zaqy Mohamad Marsiling 2006 – present Senior Minister of State for Manpower and Defence , Deputy Leader of the house
20 Hany Soh Woodgrove 2020 – present -

5 Member Group Constituency

No Name Constituency Division Length of service (cumulative) Notes
1 Lee Hsien Loong Ang Mo Kio GRCTeck Ghee 1984 – present Prime Minister
2 Darryl David Ang Mo Kio – Hougang 2015 – present -
3 Nadia Ahmad Samdin Cheng San – Seletar 2020 – present -
4 Ng Ling Ling Jalan Kayu 2020 – present -
5 Gan Thiam Poh Fernvale 2011 – present -
6 Heng Swee Keat East Coast GRCBedok 2011 – present Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies
7 Maliki Osman Siglap 2011 – present Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for Education and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs
8 Tan Kiat How Kampong Chai Chee 2020 – present Senior Minister of State for National Development and Communication and Information
9 Cheryl Chan Fengshan 2015 – present -
10 Jessica Tan Changi – Simei 2006 – present Deputy Speaker of Parliament
11 Tharman Shanmugaratnam Jurong GRCTaman Jurong 2001 – present Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for Social Policies
12 Tan Wu Meng Clementi 2015 – present -
13 Rahayu Mahzam Bukit Batok East 2015 – present Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Law
14 Shawn Huang Wei Zhong Jurong Spring 2020 – present -
15 Xie Yao Quan Jurong Central 2020 – present -
16 Tan Chuan-Jin Marine Parade GRCKembangan – Chai Chee 2011 – present Speaker of Parliament
17 Edwin Tong Joo Chiat 2015 – present Minister for Culture, Community and Youth and Second Minister for Law
18 Seah Kian Peng Braddell Heights 2006 – present -
19 Tan See Leng Marine Parade 2020 – present Minister of Manpower and Second Minister for Trade and Industry
20 Mohd Fahmi Aliman Geylang Serai 2020 – present -
21 K. Shanmugam Nee Soon GRCChong Pang 1988 – present Minister of Law and Home Affairs
22 Carrie Tan Nee Soon South 2020 – present -
23 Derrick Goh Nee Soon Link 2020 – present -
24 Louis Ng Nee Soon East 2015 – present -
25 Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim Nee Soon Central 2011 – present Minister of State for Home Affairs and National Development
26 Teo Chee Hean Pasir Ris–Punggol GRCPasir Ris West 1992 – present Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security
27 Janil Puthucheary Pasir Ris Coast 2015 – present Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information and Health
28 Mohamed Sharael Taha Pasir Ris East 2020 – present -
29 Yeo Wan Ling Punggol Shore 2020 – present -
30 Desmond Tan Pasir Ris Central 2020 – present Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office
31 Ong Ye Kung Sembawang GRCSembawang Central 2015 – present Minister of Health
32 Vikram Nair Admiralty 2011 – present -
33 Lim Wee Kiak Canberra 2015 – present -
34 Poh Li San Sembawang West 2020 – present -
35 Mariam Jaafar Woodlands 2020 – present -
36 Masagos Zulkifli Tampines GRCTampines West 2006 – present Minister for Social and Family Development and Second Minister for Health
37 Baey Yam Keng Tampines North 2006 – present Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Environment and Transport
38 Desmond Choo Tampines Changkat 2015 – present -
39 Cheng Li Hui Tampines East 2015 – present -
40 Koh Poh Koon Tampines Central 2015 – present Senior Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment and Manpower
41 Chan Chun Sing Tanjong Pagar GRCBuona Vista 2011 – present Minister of Education
42 Indranee Rajah Tanjong Pagar – Tiong Bahru 2001 – present Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for Finance and National Development , Leader of the House
43 Joan Pereira Henderson – Dawson 2015 – present -
44 Eric Chua Queenstown 2020 – present Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Culture, Community and Youth and Social and Family Development
45 Alvin Tan Moulmein – Cairnhill 2020 – present Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth and Trade and Industry
46 S. Iswaran West Coast GRCWest Coast 2001 – present Minister of Transport
47 Desmond Lee Boon Lay 2011 – present Minister of National Development
48 Foo Mee Har Ayer Rajah – Gek Poh 2011 – present -
49 Ang Wei Neng Nanyang 2020 – present -
50 Rachel Ong Sin Yen Telok Blangah 2020 – present -

Electoral history

Legislative Assembly

Election Seats up for election Seats contested by party Seats won by walkover Contested seats won Contested seats lost Total seats won Change Total votes Share of votes Resulting government Party leader
1955 25 4 0 3 1
3 / 25
3 13,634 8.7% Opposition Lee Kuan Yew
1959 51 51 0 43 8
43 / 51
40 281,891 54.1% Supermajority
1963 51 51 0 37 14
37 / 51
6 272,924 46.9% Supermajority
Legislative Assembly by-elections
Election Seats up for election Seats contested by party Contested seats won Contested seats lost Total votes Share of votes Outcome of election Constituency contested Party leader
1957 2 1 1 0 4,707 37.0% 1 seat hold Tanjong Pagar SMC Lee Kuan Yew
1961 2 2 0 2 5,872 31.1% 1 seat lost to Independent, 1 seat lost to WP Anson SMC

Hong Lim SMC
1965 1 1 0 1 6,398 59.5% 1 seat gained from UPP Hong Lim SMC

Malaysian Parliament

Election Seats up for election Seats contested by party Seats won by walkover Contested seats won Contested seats lost Total seats won Change Total votes Share of votes Resulting government Party leader
1964 144 11 0 1 10
1 / 144
1 42,130 2.0% Opposition Lee Kuan Yew


Election Seats up for election Seats contested by party Seats won by walkover Contested seats won Contested seats lost Total seats won Change Total votes Share of votes Resulting government Party leader
1968 58 58 51 7 0
58 / 58
21 65,812 86.7% Won all seats Lee Kuan Yew
1972 65 65 8 57 0
65 / 65
7 524,892 70.4% Won all seats
1976 69 69 16 53 0
69 / 69
4 590,169 74.1% Won all seats
1980 75 75 37 38 0
75 / 75
6 494,268 77.7% Won all seats
1984 79 79 30 47 2
77 / 79
2 568,310 64.8% Supermajority
1988 81 81 11 69 1
80 / 81
3 848,029 63.2% Supermajority
1991 81 81 41 36 4
77 / 81
3 477,760 61.0% Supermajority Goh Chok Tong
1997 83 83 47 34 2
81 / 83
4 465,751 65.0% Supermajority
2001 84 84 55 27 2
82 / 84
1 470,765 75.3% Supermajority
2006 84 84 37 45 2
82 / 84
748,130 66.6% Supermajority Lee Hsien Loong
2011 87 87 5 76 6
81 / 87
1 1,212,514 60.14% Supermajority
2015 89 89 0 83 6
83 / 89
2 1,576,784 69.86% Supermajority
2020 93 93 0 83 10
83 / 93
1,524,781 61.24% Supermajority
Parliamentary by-elections
Election Seats up for election Seats contested by party Seats won by walkover Contested seats won Contested seats lost Total votes Share of votes Outcome of election Constituency contested Party leader
1966 7 7 6 1 0 9,082 82.9% 7 seats gained from BS Bukit Merah SMC

Bukit Timah SMC

Chua Chu Kang SMC

Crawford SMC

Joo Chiat SMC

Jurong SMC

Paya Lebar SMC
Lee Kuan Yew
1967 5 5 4 1 0 9,407 83.6% 5 seats gained from BS Bukit Panjang SMC

Havelock SMC

Jalan Kayu SMC

Tampines SMC

Thomson SMC
1970 5 5 3 2 0 14,545 69.9% 5 seats hold Delta SMC

Havelock SMC

Kampong Kapor SMC

Ulu Pandan SMC

Whampoa SMC
1979 7 7 2 5 0 53,222 72.7% 7 seats hold Anson SMC

Geylang West SMC

Mountbatten SMC

Nee Soon SMC

Potong Pasir SMC

Sembawang SMC

Telok Blangah SMC
1981 1 1 0 0 1 6,359 47.1% 1 seat lost to WP Anson SMC
1992 4 4 0 4 0 48,965 72.9% 4 seats hold Marine Parade GRC Goh Chok Tong
2012 1 1 0 0 1 8,223 37.9% No seat Hougang SMC Lee Hsien Loong
2013 1 1 0 0 1 12,856 43.7% 1 seat lost to WP Punggol East SMC
2016 1 1 0 1 0 14,428 61.21% 1 seat hold Bukit Batok SMC

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