LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY GENERAL ELECTION 1959
This was the first GE for a fully-elected legislature under self-government after negotiations between the British and Singapore lawmakers concluded successfully. Appointed seats were abolished. Constituencies were further divided and new ones carved out. In the process, names that disappeared were Geylang, Katong, Punggol-Tampines, Seletar, Serangoon and Ulu Bedok. Lim Yew Hock, who succeeded David Marshall as Chief Minister after the latter resigned in 1957, used tough measures to quell the pro-communists, causing the ground to turn against him. His government was also ridden with corruption. By the end of LF's term, its credibility was in tatters. To face the polls with a fresh new image, CM Lim led most of its members to abandon LF and form SPA, leaving the party in the hands of backbenchers. The three Assembly Members who were elected as independents in 1955, Ahmad Ibrahim, M. P. D. Nair and R. Jumabhoy, joined PAP, SPA and LSP respectively while three LF AMs, A. R. Lazarous, Lee Choon Eng and Seah Peng Chuan, became independent due to disagreement with the formation of SPA. Seah later formed CP. With only four AMs in the previous legislature, PAP pulled a surprise by fielding candidates in all seats. MIC and SMU candidates adopted independent symbols, although the former worked closely with UMNO-MCA. For the first time, voting was compulsory. In the only GE that had up to seven-corner contests, PAP won a landslide victory and opposition leader Lee Kuan Yew became the first Prime Minister of Singapore. The outgoing CM Lim, who was to run his last election, crossed over to head the opposition benches.
Old Assembly dissolution: 31 March 1959 [Tue]
Election deposit: $500