The SDP's youth wing, the Young Democrats (YD), met last week to elect a new set of leaders to bring the group forward to meet the exciting challenges lying ahead.
Under the YD Charter, the Council comprising of the President, Vice-President and Honorary Secretary are elected once every two years. The officers will lead the youth wing to further the aims and objectives of the Singapore Democrats.
Mr Priveen Suraj, currently serving his remaining few months in the National Service as a commando, was elected President. Mr Priveen will pursue a law degree after he finishes his army stint. He joined the SDP when he was still a junior college student.
"I am proud to serve as president of the Young Democrats," he said. "We are a motivated group of Singaporeans who will be actively reaching out to our fellow youths to get them interested in politics and involved with the SDP."
Mr Jufri Salim will deputise as Vice-President. A young father of three, Mr Jufri has shown exceptional courage and political maturity when he took part in the Tak Boleh Tahan protest outside Parliament House. He pleaded guilty to the offence because of work commitment but insisted on going to prison instead of paying the fine.
The Honorary Secretary's post was taken up by Mr Jarrod Luo, a biomedical science and microbiology graduate from Australia's University of Queensland. Mr Luo became active with the Singapore Democrats last year and has shown tremendous drive in helping to organise the YD.
The YD was formed in 2000 with just four members. The number has grown steadily through the years and is now an active component of the Singapore Democrats. Its members and associates provide the skills and know-how in the party's online work.
The YD is a member of the Young Liberals and Democrats in Asia (YLDA) as well as the International Federation for Liberal Youths (IFLRY). YD member Ms Surayah Akbar recently participated in a workshop for women in Hong Kong organised by YLDA.
There are already high expectations of the three leaders, all in their 20s. They are tasked with expanding the YD's membership and to promote the mother party's message of reform and political change in Singapore.
At the meeting, members expressed that it was important for the YD to conduct community service and extend a hand to those who have been left behind under the system. They also indicated that they would reach out to younger Singaporeans through social events.
Secretary-General Chee Soon Juan congratulated the leaders and called on them to demonstrate effective leadership by working with all YD members to bring about an organisation that will be the pride of not just the SDP but also the whole of Singapore.