While former minister Tan Chuan-Jin’s started his first day at work as a Speaker in Parliament yesterday, the identity of Singapore’s latest President was revealed at the Elections Department last evening.
All three most likely candidates for the Presidential race- Halimah Yacob, Farid Khan and Mohamed Salleh Marican- received the Malay Community Certificate.
But only Mdm Halimah received the Certificate of Eligibility as the other two applicants did not meet the qualifying criteria.
So, if Mdm Halimah does not screw up her paperwork on Nomination Day tomorrow, she will start her term immediately as President.
And yes, this also means no public holiday for us. Boo.
This outcome may not come as a surprise but it doesn’t help anyone. The same questions remain on this election process: Isn’t this a fixed race? And the criteria were set so high that not many potential applicants can meet it?
The irony of it is that since the criteria has been set and passed in Parliament, there is really no point lowering it so that those who cannot meet the criteria can also contest the Presidency, isn’t it? It just does not makes sense to bend the rules just to have a contest.
Now, we just have to go through the process set by the system. Mdm Halimah will be Singapore’s 8th President and its first female President.
Mdm Halimah told the media yesterday: “The process may be a reserved election – but the president is for everyone, for all communities, regardless of race or religion.”
Ok Mdm Halimah, we leave it to you to show us how you will do it.