Presidential Election 2017

WP to raise term count when House sits on Sept 11

The Workers' Party-run Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC).
The Workers' Party-run Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC). PHOTO: ST FILE

The Workers' Party (WP) wants to take up the issue of when the Government should start counting the five presidential terms of office needed to trigger a reserved election.

On Facebook, the party said that its chairman Sylvia Lim had filed an adjournment motion to speak on the topic when Parliament sits on Sept 11.

The Government chose to count from the final term of President Wee Kim Wee, who was the first president to exercise the powers of the elected president.

On this premise, the Sept 23 presidential election will be reserved for Malay candidates.

Others have argued that the count should be from the term of President Ong Teng Cheong, the first president elected by the people. Former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock mounted a legal challenge on the issue but the Court of Appeal ruled that Parliament could count from President Wee's term.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 29, 2017, with the headline 'WP to raise term count when House sits on Sept 11'. Print Edition | Subscribe