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Singapore's 'walkover' presidential election draws public criticism

Singapore's 'walkover' presidential election draws public criticism

This is very special because she will be Singapore's first woman president, and we are very proud that someone like her who lives in an HDB flat in Yishun could become president.

The statement was issued by Mr Syafarin Sarif, Chairman of People's Power Party (PPP). She resigned from that post in August. Madam Halimah, though technically an Indian by descent, have had her "Malayness" certified four times over in general elections previously.

"I can only say that I promise to do the best that I can to serve the people of Singapore and that doesn't change whether there is an election or no election", Yacob said about the news on Monday, according to Channel News Asia.

The ELD had earlier said that only one individual had qualified for the PE.

The election, which had been scheduled for September 23, will no longer be held and Yacob is expected to be formally declared the victor on Wednesday.

The two other Malay presidential hopefuls - businessmen Salleh Marican and Farid Khan - failed to gain Certificates of Eligibility from the Presidential Elections Committee on these grounds, although the Presidential Elections Committee could have exercised its discretion to allow them to run for the office. An Independent Commission appointed by the Elected President should look into every attempt of amendment made to the Constitution and the Elected President should also be vested with Veto power to such amendment with the advice of the Commission.

Warning for very strong winds issued
The warning starts at 8pm tomorrow (Tuesday September 12) and lasts until 10am the following morning (Wednesday September 13). Forecasters predicted as much as 4cm of rain in a short spell - approaching half of the near-10cm average for September.

This year's presidential election, which would have been on 23 September, is reserved for Malay candidates.

Singapore's population is 74% Chinese, 13% Malay, 9% Indian and 3.2% are the ambiguously named "Others".

The rising threat of terrorism makes unity crucial, said outgoing President Tony Tan. That meant that this year's election was reserved for someone from Singapore's minority Malay community.

Tan, a former deputy prime minister, was elected in a tight race in 2011.

Analysts said Singaporeans may take time to accept such reserved elections.

It is not the first time that a president has been chosen unopposed, and when there has been a vote, the establishment candidate has always won. "It is not a surprise therefore that there is unfamiliarity with it, a questioning of whether any of it is needed, and a sense of ambivalence about having only candidates of one racial group contest in it", said Gillian Koh, a senior research fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.