LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY GENERAL ELECTION 1963
This was remembered as PAP's most bitterly-fought GE in history and the only one during the period when Singapore was part of Malaysia, along with Sabah and Sarawak. After two by-election defeats and two defections to UPP, PAP expelled 13 of its own Assembly Members who mutinied in a no-confidence motion on 20 July 1961 and was hanging onto a slim one-seat majority of 26 to the opposition's 25. The dissidents formed a new party, BS, which PAP alleged was a communist front. On 3 July 1962, with the National Referendum on everyone's minds, PAP AM Hoe Puay Choo resigned and joined BS on 11 August 1962. After five days, UPP's S. V. Lingam returned to PAP's fold but in another five days, Minister Ahmad Ibrahim passed away from liver cancer, leaving a 25 to 25 stand-off in the legislature. BS intended to field its iconic leader Lim Chin Siong in the vacated seat should there be a by-election. Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew decided not to hold one. Instead, he chose to call a GE to court a fresh mandate and if PAP did not win, the Malaysia Federal authorities could deal with the pro-communist BS as the ruling party. Nevertheless, the government launched Operation Coldstore on 2 February 1963 to deal a first blow to the pro-communists and detained several BS leaders, including Lim. Sole WP AM David Marshall resigned from the party he founded and became independent. On nomination day, PAP again fielded a full slate and was challenged by three camps also with enough candidates to run for power. BS and its partner PR covered all except two seats. UPP surprised many with a large slate and SA, a formalised umbrella of SPA, UMNO, MCA and MIC, was endorsed by Malaysia's ruling Alliance Party coalition. SPA provided two-thirds of SA's candidates but former Chief Minister Lim Yew Hock sat out. The results of the GE would also determine the distribution of 15 Singapore seats in Malaysia's Parliament after the Federal GE on 25 April 1964. In the end, PAP emerged victorious with a two-thirds majority and captured all wards won by SA in 1959. All except in three constituencies saw a record of 92 candidates forfeit their deposits. The presence of independent legislators came to an end. Based on the result, PAP was allocated 12 out of 15 seats in the Federal Parliament and BS three. Two ministers who lost their seats, Kenneth Byrne and Tan Kia Gan, were later appointed chairmen of the Central Provident Fund and Housing and Development Board respectively. SA AM A. P. Rajah, who was also defeated, was brought back into the LA as Speaker and served for two years until 1966. To deter defections henceforth, the PAP government swiftly passed a law stipulating that legislators will lose their seats if they resign or are expelled from the parties that they were elected under. The following year in 1964, PAP was officially registered on Peninsular soil and contested the elections in the Federation. Despite winning only one seat in Kuala Lumpur, PAP's move escalated its differences with the ruling Alliance Party of Malaysia.
Old Assembly dissolution: 3 September 1963 [Tue]
Election deposit: $500