​Ensuring a fair and just Government
PUBLISHED ON 05 Jun 2019
PAP’s Mission continues 60 years on
Sixty years ago, on this day, the People’s Action Party (PAP) formed its first elected government.  It was on this day, 5 June 1959, that Mr Lee Kuan Yew and his Cabinet were sworn in at City Hall.

The formation of the PAP Government signalled a break from the yoke of colonialism and most significantly, it marked a new chapter in Singapore’s history. 

Mr Lee and the pioneer batch of ministers wore open-necked white shirts and trousers, symbolising an honest and corruption-free Party, to their swearing-in ceremony. 

The nine-member cabinet comprised Mr Lee Kuan Yew (Prime Minister), Dr Toh Chin Chye (Deputy Prime Minister), Dr Goh Keng Swee (Minister for Finance), Mr S. Rajaratnam (Minister for Culture), Mr Ong Eng Guan (Minister for National Development), Mr Ong Pang Boon (Minister for Home Affairs), Mr K. M. Byrne (Minister for Labour and Law), Mr Ahmad Ibrahim (Minister for Health) and Mr Yong Nyuk Lin (Minister for Education).  

PAP’s landmark victory came after a General Election was held on 30 May 1959. A total of 194 candidates from more than 10 political parties contested the 51 seats in the Legislative Assembly. The PAP secured 43 seats, garnering 53.4 per cent of the votes cast. 

The mission of the PAP then was to (and it still is) to provide Singapore and its people with a government that was fair and just, stable and effective, honest and corruption-free and capable of resolving the various economic and social problems. 

As such, PAP’s election manifesto “The Tasks Ahead” outlined a five-year plan and called for a series of policies to provide low-cost housing, education as well as employment opportunities for Singaporeans.

60 years on, Singapore has transformed from mudflats to metropolis. The PAP’s cause of providing a better life to its people continues as it stays on its course and works together with Singaporeans to ensure progress and stability for many more years ahead.