SPP chairman Jose Raymond retires from politics to focus on expanding business

He thanked many of the people he met on his political journey.

Jason Fan | December 24, 2020, 03:23 AM

Singapore People's Party (SPP) chairman Jose Raymond has bid farewell to politics, in order to focus on expanding his company regionally.

Raymond most recently contested in Potong Pasir SMC for the first time during the recent 2020 General Election (GE2020).

He lost the seat to Sitoh Yih Pin of the People's Action Party (PAP).

Welcomed those in need to continue reaching out to him

He founded SW Strategies in 2016, and is currently the firm's chief strategy officer.

In a Facebook post, Raymond announced that he will be stepping down from politics in order to focus on expanding the firm regionally, which is a goal he had since 2016.

He said he originally entered politics to help others, but has realised that one need not be in politics to positively impact the lives of others.

Raymond said that he was "truly sorry" if he disappointed his supporters or volunteers with his decision to leave politics, and welcomed those who need his help to continue to reach out to him.

Thank those he met on his political journey

Raymond also thanked his team of volunteers, referring to many of them by name.

"I have made so many friends along the way, and I am thankful for all of your support," said Raymond.

He also thanked his supporters, especially those who have donated and bought his merchandise during the recent 2020 General Election (GE2020).

He expressed his respect to those from both sides of the political aisle, for "putting in the years into what you truly believe in".

Raymond said that contesting in Potong Pasir SMC during GE2020 has allowed him to fulfil a wish his father had, which was for him to stand for elections.

Lina Chiam approached him to join the SPP

Raymond took over as SPP chairman in November 2019, taking over Lina Chiam, the wife of Chiam See Tong, who served as an MP for Potong Pasir SMC between 1984 to 2011.

In an interview with Mothership, he talked about his long history with the Chiams, starting with his father bringing him to one of Chiam's election rallies in Potong Pasir in 1984.

Chiam campaigned fiercely, Raymond recalled, and managed to win the seat for the first time that year.

A few years later, in 1990, Raymond's father faced financial difficulties, and approached Chiam for help, despite not being a resident of Potong Pasir.

Chiam handed Raymond's father a cheque on the spot, and helped the family in their hour of need.

Raymond and Chiam would not meet again for many years, until 2016, when the Chiams reached out to him to discuss setting up the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund.

A few months after the fund was launched, Mrs Chiam invited him to help out with the SPP.

Raymond submitted his membership to join the SPP in October 2017, after spending some time meeting people on the ground.

According to CNA, SPP has received Raymond's resignation letter, and will make a decision at the next central executive committee (CEC) meeting.

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Top image via Jose Raymond/FB.