LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY GENERAL ELECTION 1959
This was the first GE for a fully-elected legislature in new self-governance Singapore after negotiations between the British and Singapore lawmakers arrived at a successful conclusion. Appointed seats were abolished. Chief Minister Lim Yew Hock, who succeeded David Marshall after the latter resigned in 1957, used extreme measures to quell the communists, causing the ground to turn against him. His government was also ridden with corruption. By the time LF's term was up, its credibility was in tatters. To face the polls with a fresh new image, CM Lim led a large group to abandon LF and form SPA. LF was left in the hands of backbenchers. The three independent Assembly Members who were elected 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, with Seah forming CP. With only four AMs in the previous legislature, PAP pulled a surprise by fielding candidates in all seats. MIC and SMU 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]
Total voters: 586,098
Election deposit: $500