WP did not call Leon Perera’s driver for an interview as there was no other source: Pritam

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WP did not call Leon Perera’s driver for an interview as there was no other source: Pritam

SINGAPORE – The Workers’ Party leadership did not summon former Aljunied GRC MP Leon Perera’s driver for an interview after receiving reports from him about Mr Perera’s affair, Opposition Leader and WP chief Pritam Singh said in Parliament on Wednesday.

He was responding to questions from Mr Vikram Nair (Sembawang GRC) as to why the driver had not been called in for an interview and whether steps had been taken to protect the driver’s identity as an informant.

Mr Singh said: “There was no corroborating information to work with. There was no other source. If either of those two criteria came into play, I think something different would have happened. We should have looked into the matter more carefully, apart from what Mr. Perera shared with us.”

Mr Singh also answered no when asked by Mr Vikram whether the need to collate further corroborating evidence had been conveyed to the driver.

Mr Singh earlier, in response to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s ministerial statement on the resignation of two People’s Action Party MPs, said he was ready to answer questions about how his own party was handling with the indiscretions between members of his party, if any.

At a press conference on July 19, Mr Singh announced that Mr Perera and former senior party member Nicole Seah had resigned from the party after lying about their affair.

On Wednesday, Mr. Vikram said that normally in a proper organization, when a person receives information from a reliable source who is close to the crime that something has happened, it will be treated as a whistleblower.

Steps will then be taken to protect that person, who will be summoned for further questioning, he said.

Mr. Singh said the party had to deal with the information shared by the driver.

He said: “We have assessed (the) general circumstances in which the information was given to us and as we have found out post facto, of course this person is a former police officer with I think 10 years experience. I think it was in the (news) papers.

“I would expect someone close to Mr. Perera, very close to Mr. Perera, to have corroborating evidence. I would have expected them, especially since you were the driver.

On protecting the driver’s identity as an informer, Mr Singh noted that the driver had obtained the numbers of a “significant number” of WP members and had spread the allegations to them.

He said he had not disclosed the identity of the source but needed to check with Mr Perera on the information he had received.

Mr. Vikram had asked him, “You mentioned that you did not tell Mr. Perera. You have not disclosed the source of the information. How did you tell Mr. Perera that you found out about his imprudence – did you say that the driver told you?

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