PETALING JAYA: The Speaker of Singapore’s Parliament Halimah Yacob today confirmed that she intends to contest the upcoming presidential election, which has been reserved for Malay candidates.
Channel NewsAsia reported that the Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC Member of Parliament said she made the decision as the position “has the tremendous capacity to do good for all Singaporeans and for Singapore”.
“Hence, I wish to inform you that I will be contesting in the coming presidential election,” she said at a function in the republic this evening.
Halimah also said she would be resigning as speaker and MP tomorrow.
Halimah had been widely expected to take part in the presidential election since July.
In recent days, Halimah’s heritage has come under question as this year’s vote is reserved for the Malay community.
Halimah’s late father was Indian-Muslim.
The 62-year-old said she has been “certified four times by the Community Committee as a member of the Malay community”.
The committee ascertains whether candidates belong to a particular racial community.
Bourbon Offshore Asia chairman Farid Khan Kaim Khan has also announced his candidacy.
Farid was confident of qualifying as a Malay candidate even though his identity card identifies him as “Pakistani”.
A third potential candidate is Mohamed Salleh Marican, CEO of Second Chance Properties.
Channel NewsAsia said this year’s presidential election will be held in September.
Applications opened on June 1 and will close five days after the writ of election is issued in August.
Tony Tan won the Aug 27, 2011 presidential election and was sworn in as the seventh president of Singapore on Sept 1, 2011.
The president holds office for a term of six years.