Anger in Singapore as no election for president

Presidential election: only one certificate of eligibility issued

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.

Former Speaker of the Parliament Halimah Yacob is set to become the nation's next president after she was the only candidate issued a certificate of eligibility by the Presidential Elections Committee.

She and her team members will gather at NTUC Centre this morning before heading to the PA Headquarters, the designated nomination centre, to submit her papers.

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.

Yusof was president between 1965 and 1970, the first years of Singapore's independence following a short-lived union with neighbouring Malaysia, but executive power lay with Lee Kuan Yew, the country's first prime minister.

The reserved election system and heightened eligibility criteria have now made it hard for the office to be a truly elected one.

The ELD said it has notified all five individuals on the outcome of their applications, with the reasons given to the unsuccessful parties as well.

The other two candidates who had received Malay Community Certificates later confirmed they had not qualified. They were required to have managed a company with shareholder equity of at least S$500 million (HK$2.9 billion).

He said: "Although I am disappointed by the committee's decision, it will not stop me from continuing to serve the people".

Ahead of Nomination Day, Mdm Halimah said in a Facebook post that she would make a "pledge" to all Singaporeans from the nomination centre, the People's Association headquarters at King George's Avenue.

"To be clear, the PEC's hands are tied".

"A contest would have added to her legitimacy", Tan said. This will ensure a truly fair electoral process and this will enhance the independent role of the Elected Presidency above and beyond partisan politicking.

"The election could have provided a wonderful opportunity for Singaporeans to better understand the reserved election mechanism and to exercise their democratic choice".

While Singapore's Constitution does provide for voters to elect their president, the government established such narrow criteria for the candidates that only Halimah made the cut.

"But I am confident that in her term, she will prove her doubters wrong".

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