Few took forms at Elections Department

A signboard of the Election Department.
A signboard of the Election Department. PHOTO: ST FILE

Despite the debate generated by Singapore's presidential election, the first to be reserved for Malay candidates, the first day applications opened was a quiet one.

Aspiring candidates can also download application forms to certify that they are eligible to run from the Elections Department (ELD) website.

Private-hire driver Shirwin Eu, 34, was the first to collect application forms, arriving at the Elections Department building in Prinsep Link at about 10.30am yesterday.

He seemed undeterred by the fact that the election is reserved for Malay candidates - or by the qualifying criteria that include candidates having helmed a firm with at least $500 million in shareholders' equity. "I think there is always a chance for the Government to review its intentions," he said, citing the legal challenge filed by former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock over whether the upcoming presidential election should be a reserved one.

Mr Eu had also collected forms ahead of the Bukit Batok by-election last year and the September 2015 General Election. But he did not file the papers in Bukit Batok, and in 2015, did not have the required signatures to contest.

At about 11am, a man riding a motorcycle was spotted carrying an envelope in and out of the ELD. He did not speak to the media, and it was not clear whether he collected application forms.

At about 2pm, two men also turned up at the ELD. They left after about two hours. When asked if they had taken any forms, one said he was under a non-disclosure agreement. The other said no.

•Additional reporting by Rachel Au-Yong

Eu says “I’m doing this by instinct”. str.sg/4LNy

 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 02, 2017, with the headline 'Few took forms at Elections Department'. Print Edition | Subscribe