Protests as Singapore names first woman president

Protests as Singapore names first woman president
September 13
18:46 2017

Criticisms have trailed the naming of Halimah Yacob as Singapore’s president-elect.

Yacob, 63, would be first woman president who would hold the position which is a six-year ceremonial term.

Singapore had decreed that the position would be reserved for minority Malay this time.

But Yacob emerged after the elections department disqualified the other four candidates, of which two of them are not Malays.


But according to Reuters, this led to wide-spread criticism as some citizens went online to protest “the stringent eligibility rules”.

Part of the rules is that a candidate from the private sector should have headed a company with paid-up capital of at least S$500 million ($370 million).

Reacting, Yee Jenn Jong, opposition politician, said it would have restored some of the lost moral authority if she had won her opponents through popular votes.


“It would have restored some of the lost moral authority by her winning against credible opponents through popular votes,” he said in a blog post.

“She is, after all, a veteran in elections and has won handsomely in the four general elections she stood in.”

Also, Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE), a rights group, in a statement said Yacob’s victory had not reflected their hopes.

“[We hope] more will be done to improve access to politics for all of Singapore’s women. Unfortunately, the process that led to this outcome has not reflected our hopes,” it said.


In a speech, the president-elect said whether or not there is an election, her promise “is to serve everyone.”

”Although this is a reserved election, I‘m not a reserved president. I‘m a president for everyone,” She said.

“Whether or not there is an election or no election, my promise is to serve everyone and I will serve with great vigor, with a lot of hard work, with the same passion and commitment.”



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