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Singapore election

Singapore PM heads for 'rocky economic shoals' with election bruises

Opposition gains seen as beginning of the end of PAP's 'absolute control'

Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong checks his phone at a People's Action Party office during vote counting in the early hours of July 11.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- Singaporean voters elected a record number of opposition parliamentarians in Friday's polls, shifting the political landscape and putting Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in an uneasy position as he braces for the full economic impact of COVID-19.

The People's Action Party, which has ruled Singapore since independence in 1965, maintained its supermajority, taking 83 of 93 possible seats. Yet, while the PAP still controls nearly 90% of the legislature, the rival Workers' Party could have been mistaken for the victors judging from the jubilant supporters who took to the streets.

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