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Tan Cheng Bock questions government's decision on reserved election

Friday, March 31, 2017 - 12:20

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Former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock called on the Singapore government to explain its decision to include the term of former president Wee Kim Wee in deciding when to trigger a reserved election.

FORMER presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock called on the Singapore government to explain its decision to include the term of former president Wee Kim Wee in deciding when to trigger a reserved election.

Calling a press conference on Friday, Dr Tan, 76, said the late Mr Wee was not elected but nominated into office, even though he performed the role of an elected president after changes to the presidency took effect in 1991.

Dr Tan, a former People's Action Party backbencher, said: "In all my years in Parliament, we have always referred to Mr Ong Teng Cheong as the first elected president."

The late Mr Ong took office after Mr Wee stepped down and was the first president chosen in a presidential election.

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Dr Tan said in this case, the upcoming presidential election should be an open one where candidates from all races can contest, and not reserved for Malay candidates.

His remarks came about five months after Parliament approved changes to the Constitution to ensure that Singaporeans of all races are represented in the highest office in the land, and to update the eligibility criteria for presidential candidates.

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