Launching a political career isn’t for the faint of heart. In recent weeks, several young and bright female professionals contesting in the upcoming General Elections 2015 have captured the public’s imagination with their spunk and heart. Read our short Brave Heart series of profiles for a snapshot of the candidates and what they stand for. Here is the third, on The Workers’ Party candidate Cheryl Denise Loh.
“At The Workers’ Party, we believe in equal opportunities and agree elitism cannot rule Singapore… What we need are capable leaders with diverse backgrounds who generally want to serve the people of Sngapore, and to do so with a good heart.”
– Excerpt of Cheryl Loh’s speech on Sep 2, 2015, at the Hougang Rally
CHERYL DENISE LOH, 32
Occupation: Sales consultant at a global services company
Background: She earned her Bachelor of Business degree in Economics and Finance from SIM-RMIT in 2012, completing it part-time while she held down a full-time job. Her alma maters are St Anthony’s Canossian Secondary and Temasek Polytechnic, where she obtained a Diploma in Law and Management.
Political Party: The Workers’ Party (WP)
Contesting In: Nee Soon GRC
Why She Entered Politics: Describing herself as having been raised mostly by relatives and from a “slightly disadvantaged” background, she wants to serve those who are in the same predicament as her in her earlier years, and also folks who face difficulties or have been left behind in the rapid growth of the country. She also attributed her political aspirations to her late Peranakan grandmother, who taught her Malay: “The elderly have contributed a lot in paving Singapore into what it is today and hence I believe more can be done to thank and to support them in their golden years.”
How She Started At WP: She used to watch the parliamentary debates when she was just a child, and would be intrigued by the sparring between Chiam See Tong, Low Thia Khiang and Lee Kuan Yew. It was, however, in her adulthood when she had a chance meeting with Low Thia Khiang that she felt inspired to get involved. She was at her uncle’s home for a housewarming gathering when Low dropped by for a house visit and chatted with them, after which he gave them a pamphlet and his contacts. “To me, I think everything happens for a reason… I wrote to him and that’s how it all started. I began helping out at the Meet-The-People Sessions and slowly, for house visits and all the other activities as well.”
Pet Issues: Issues closest to her heart are the less privileged group’s access to good-quality education, better funding for neighbourhood schools, better care for the elderly, providing suitable jobs for old folks who still want to stay self-sufficient and economically productive, and improving retirement adequacy.
Interesting Facts: Cheryl relied on part-time work and the generosity of her relatives to get through secondary school and polytechnic. She did not want to elaborate on her parents.
Information and quotes derived from Todayonline.com; The Straits Times; and The Workers’ Party Youth Wing website. Images taken from Cheryl Denise Loh’s Facebook public profile.