Singapore to hold presidential elections on Sep.1

Singapore, Aug 22 (EFE).- Singapore is to hold presidential elections on Sep. 1 with three candidates running for office, which has a more ceremonial than political weight, the city-state’s election commission confirmed Tuesday.

The three candidates are former Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, a strong supporter of the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP); former investment director of the GIC sovereign fund, Ng Kok Song; and Tan Kin Lian, a former executive of an insurance company.

It marks the first time a presidential election in Singapore has been contested in more than a decade, and the third such election since a constitutional amendment in 1991 converted the six-year post into an elected one.

The current president, Halimah Yacob, a former member of the PAP, was the only eligible candidate in the 2017 presidential race.

Although real power rests with the prime minister, this election is likely to gauge popular support for the PAP through its candidate, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, amid a wave of scandals that have rocked the party that has governed the island since 1959.

The most serious one among them involved Transport Minister S. Iswaran, who was removed from office after the anti-corruption department confirmed his arrest in July, along with that of a city-state tycoon. EFE


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