So recently, it’s been made known, that Singapore’s next President shall be Malay. Before this election, nobody’s actually raised the issue of race representation in the Presidency (which is a symbolic one anyway, and one that does not wield any power).
Interestingly, the internet was actually talking about who the next Prime Minister might be, and the people’s choice seemed to be DPM Tharman. In fact, it made so much noise that he had to come out and rule himself out of the PM race.
Then out of nowhere, this race representation in the Presidency came up, and conveniently swept the important debate (the Prime Minister position) under the rug.
CNA then came up with this article: Singapore’s next President: A look at potential candidates.
A Dr Norshahril Saat, Fellow, ISEAS Yusof Ishak Institute said the following:
The purpose of having a President is not as a check and balance to Parliament. So I think one issue that the candidates should avoid is to act as if they can check the Government. They can’t because they’re largely symbolic even though they have custodial powers.
That makes sense. We all know the President’s role, in terms of affecting government, as largely non-existent.
He then follows that up (in the same article!) with this:
You must ensure that every vote counts. You must ensure that citizens feel that their vote counts. Candidates must come out very strongly and tell voters that they’re voting for the future of Singapore.
So, just to recap: You’re asking us to vote for someone, acknowledging that he will have no real power, to sit in a role full of symbolism and pay him S$1.54m a year.
You then say that they should then try convincing us that we’re actually voting for the future of Singapore?
That’s like asking us to vote for a Survivor winner without seeing them jump through hoops to earn it, and spinning the most bullshit story on why they deserve it.
Sure, looking forward.