SINGAPORE: Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said all MPs and grassroots advisors must uphold high standards of propriety and personal conduct.
He was commenting on the resignation of Speaker of Parliament Michael Palmer in a Facebook posting.
At a news conference on Wednesday, Mr Palmer said he has resigned from the People’s Action Party (PAP) and as MP for Punggol East SMC after an improper relationship with a staff member of the People’s Association.
Releasing the exchange of letters between himself and Mr Palmer on Facebook, Mr Lee said it was with great sadness that he accepted the resignation.
He said Mr Palmer had worked diligently as an MP, firstly for Pasir Ris—Punggol GRC from 2006 to 2011 and then as an MP for the single member division of Punggol East since the 2011 general election.
And as speaker over the past year, he has presided over proceedings in the House with dignity and a sure touch.
Mr Palmer has also won the respect of Ministers and backbenchers.
Mr Lee, who is the PAP’s Secretary—General, said that he is glad that Mr Palmer realised that what he had done was wrong and had been forthright in acknowledging the mistake he made.
The Prime Minister hopes that Singaporeans will give Mr Palmer and his family the peace and privacy to rebuild their lives and he has encouraged Mr Palmer to contribute to society in his own way.
Mr Lee is also confident in time Mr Palmer will able to put this mistake behind him.
The news conference was chaired by Deputy Prime Minister and First Assistant Secretary—General of the People’s Action Party Mr Teo Chee Hean.
He said the decision to call a by—election in the SMC will be that of the Prime Minister.
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