The first phase in the hunt for a new batch of Nominated Members of Parliament (NMP) ended yesterday with the Office of the Clerk of Parliament receiving 48 proposal forms after a month-long call for names.
This is up from the 41 names submitted in 2016.
Among those vying for the NMP posts this year are fine arts lecturer Woon Tien Wei and founder of a not-for-profit arts group Felicia Low, who both announced last month that they were seeking to represent the arts sector. The general secretary of the Singapore Port Workers Union, Mr Arasu Duraisamy, has been nominated by the labour movement.
Meanwhile, the People's Association (PA) nominated four people to represent the civic and people sector, said a PA spokesman. She declined to name the four.
They are among the names proposed by seven functional groups: business and industry; the professions; the labour movement; social service organisations; the civic and people sector; tertiary education institutions; and media, arts and sports organisations.
The general public was also invited to submit names to the eight-member Special Select Committee tasked to select NMPs. The committee, chaired by Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin, will now select suitable candidates who have rendered distinguished public service, brought honour to Singapore, or have distinguished themselves in their respective fields.
In choosing the final list, the committee will interview candidates and seek the views of elected MPs.
A person is qualified for appointment as an NMP if he or she is Singaporean, aged 21 or above, and on the current register of electors.
The NMP scheme, introduced in 1990, is meant to provide non-partisan views in Parliament.
There can be up to nine NMPs in each term, which lasts 2½ years. The current term ends in September.