Speaker of Singapore’s Parliament Mrs Halimah Yacob will contest for the Presidential election to be held in September this year. She will be first woman to run for the highest office.
Sixty-two year old Halimah will step down as the Speaker, a post she has held since 2013, and as an Member of Parliament. Announcing her decision, Halimah, who is in public service for 40 years, she said that taking part in the Presidential election will allow her to continue with her service to the people of Singapore.
The Straits Times reported that she will also resign from the People’s Action Party, where she is a member of the Central Executive Committee. This presidential election will be held in September.
The upcoming election is reserved for Malay candidates, following changes to the law last year to ensure the Presidency reflects Singapore’s multiracial society. Chinese, Malay and Indian are three major ethnic groups.
Speaking at a National Day dinner at the Marsiling Mega Sports Park, the Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC Member of Parliament (MP) said: “I recognise that the position of the elected President 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.”
Speaking to media on the sidelines of the dinner, Halimah said it took her some time to make a decision as the role of the President was a “very heavy, onerous responsibility” that “had to be carefully considered”.
An opportunity to serve Singapore and Singaporeans
By HALIMAH YACOB
Over the past weeks, I was deeply humbled and honoured that so many of you have asked that I step forward to put in my bid for Presidency.
A president should unify the nation, and channel our shared values into doing good for the country, and wholeheartedly serve Singapore and Singaporeans.
This is the kind of President I would like to have.
This is the kind of President I would like to be.
I am aware that the role of President is a very heavy responsibility, and I have to take into consideration my current responsibilities and what will become of them.
I have done extensive consultations with my family and close friends over the past weeks, and I am pleased to announce that I will be contesting the Presidential Election.
I will formally resign my current official duties and positions tomorrow, as required by the Constitution of Singapore.
I have dedicated my life to serving the people for the past 40 years. It started with the Labour Movement where I fought for our workers. During my time as a Minister of State, I mooted ideas to improve our social policies, many of which have come to fruition. I have pioneered programs as a Member of Parliament for Marsiling and Bukit Batok East and as Speaker, I ensured the smooth administration of the House, giving Members a chance to have their views and opinions heard, regardless of party affiliations.
I am passionate about workers’ rights, helping the elderly and helping disadvantaged families. They will continue to be my key concerns.
The Office of President is an opportunity for me to serve Singapore and Singaporeans. It has a huge capacity to do a tremendous amount of good, and I know that we can achieve more when we focus on our shared values and goals.
I hope to have your support as I embark upon this journey.