FORMER Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob will be Singapore’s first Malay president in more than 47 years after the Elections Department (ELD) announced that she was the only eligible candidate who won the inaugural reserved Presidential Election uncontested.
In a statement from the Elections Department today, the spokesman said the other two applicants, marine services provider Bourbon Offshore Asia Pacific chairman Farid Khan, 62, and Second Chance Properties Mohamed chief executive Salleh Marican, 67, were rejected.
Halimah, 62, will be Singapore’s eighth President and the first woman to hold the position as the country’s Head of State.
The Returning Officer, Energy Market Authority chief executive Ng Wai Choong, will declare her the elected President on Nomination Day on Wednesday.
Former president Tony Tan’s six-year term expired on August 31 and Council of Presidential Advisers chairman JY Pillay has been the Acting President since September 1, and will remain so until Halimah assumes office.
There will not be a poll and Halimah will start her term as President on Thursday.
This year’s Presidential Election has been reserved for the Malay community, following changes to the Elected Presidency scheme passed by Parliament last November. The changes allow for the election to be reserved for a particular ethnicity, which has not had an elected representative for five consecutive terms.
President Yusof Ishak was Singapore’s first President and the only Malay to have held the office till he died in 1970.