Tag Archive | "presidential elections"

Presidential results: PAP-endorsed candidates garnered 70% of votes

Presidential results: PAP-endorsed candidates garnered 70% of votes

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3 ways you can report the facts.

By Fang Shihan

White Tans - 3 ways

So quite obviously 65% of the population is not happy with the way things panned out for Dr Tan Cheng Bock and opposition-meister Tan Jee Say. To the extent that newly elected President Dr. Tony Tan had to assure voters that he would strive to win over the two thirds of the electorate who did not vote for him. Shades of Sitoh Yih Pin no?

The mainstream media has been surprisingly tepid on the win. Then again, with former PAP-MPs garnering 70% of the votes, of course there would be room to spare for some negativity, just to balance out the overwhelming victory by the establishment.

But just for the fun of it, New Nation has come up with at least 3 different ways you could possibly spin the news. Enjoy.

Headline: 70% of Singaporeans vote for former PAP MPs
Standfirst: Tony Tan wins with 35.2% of vote while Tan Cheng Bock garners 34.8%.

The ruling party received a resounding stamp of approval from the electorate as both former PAP MPs Tony Tan and Tan Cheng Bock were the top performers during the presidential elections. Opposition-endorsed Tan Jee Say trailed in third place with 25% of the vote or about 10% less than the runner up. Tan Kin Lian, who led the minibonds protests in 2008 lost his $48,000 deposit after getting only 4.9% of the votes.

Headline: Tony Tan wins by razor thin margin; poor showing for the PAP
Standfirst: PAP-endorsed Tony Tan is ushered into the presidential post, winning by a margin of 0.34% against runner up.

The ruling party was delivered a wakeup call as Dr. Tony Tan, widely endorsed by the PAP, unions and government-affiliated organizations, sat through a recount in the wee hours of the morning. Once considered a shoo-in, the performance of Dr. Tony Tan was considered by many analysts as a barometer of the ruling party’s popularity among the people. Despite having been deputy prime minister, and the executive director of sovereign wealth fund, GIC, Dr. Tony Tan nearly lost to previously little-known MP Dr. Tan Cheng Bock who runs a clinic in Jurong. The former was campaigning on a platform of reform and was widely considered as a non yes-man within the party. Combined with opposition-endorsed candidate Tan Jee Say, the non-PAP vote stood at 59.8%.

Read this better and more xia lan version.

Headline: PAP candidate Dr. Tony Tan wins via split opposition vote
Standfirst: Opposition is blamed for splitting the anti-PAP vote, and installing the PAP into the presidential seat.

Two thirds of the electorate did not want a PAP-endorsed candidate as President. Yet Dr Tony Tan had the keys of the Istana handed to him with only 7,269 more votes than his nearest rival. Netizens blamed Temasek Review, Nicole Seah and the NSP for fracturing the opposition vote by endorsing Tan Jee Say and inadvertently handing victory to the PAP on a platter.

Read Temasek Review — which was down at the time of publication — for a better blamefest.

Millionaire Adam Khoo backs Dr Tony Tan for president…

Millionaire Adam Khoo backs Dr Tony Tan for president…

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…and so is the 10,000 strong Federation of Tan Clan Associations.

This is shaping up to be a rather bizarre Singapore presidential election. First, local trade union NTUC spoke favorably about Deputy Prime Minister Tony Tan, stopping short of an official endorsement.

Next, the Tan Clan announced that they are backing former him — over Tan Cheng Bock, Tan Kin Lian, and Tan Jee Say. Apparently, the Silver-Haired One was picked because of his contributions to the Association.

Now, even millionaire and entrepreneur Adam Khoo is backing Tony Tan: Read the full story

I don’t know what the elected president does

I don’t know what the elected president does

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Therefore, the method of getting the people to pick a president for Singapore is ridiculous.

By Belmont Lay

Does the President do anything more than model? Photo: CHRIS LIM / Creative Commons

LET’S  just throw up a few names here: George Yeo. Tan Kin Lian. Tan Cheng Bock. Tony Tan. SR Nathan.

And let’s assume all five of them are all going to run for president by August.

So what does this tell me? Well, the current slate of presidential hopefuls clearly represent a lack of choice.

And I’m not saying this to be a contrarian or a mischievous squirrel.

I’m saying this because even though they might be familiar faces to me one way or another, I have no idea at all what an elected president does – on a day-to-day basis.

Can he start a war? Can he dissolve parliament on a whim? Is he allowed to go to Plaza Singapura on his own? Especially when the folks from the PAP come by and he’s a tad tired of socialising?

If I don’t know what’s the job scope and what he gets up to (other than Star Awards), I can’t pick the best person for the job.

It’s like having to fit a key into a keyhole, except you’ve never seen the keyhole and putting the wrong key in might cause your house to explode, for example.

Think: So how are you then, the cleverest electorate to have found this missive, going to judge who among these valiant men can be the best at the president job?

How?

Well, you could, of course, ask SR Nathan, our current president. As the second elected president of this glorious Republic, he’s been on the job for 12 years, so I’m sure he can share an anecdote or two about how it’s like to not sign on clemency appeals and having a personal chef and chauffeur.

A reporter did ask for his thoughts but he is keeping mum, which is to be characteristically quiet and wallflowerish, because he will only let you know in September when he publishes his memoirs!

In September! When the presidential elections are already over!

So the guy who knows everything is unwilling to even release a whimper.

And since hiring a clairvoyant to interrogate Ong Teng Cheong or Wee Kim Wee about their job scope is out of the question because I believe all clairvoyants are cunning, lying bastards out to make a quick one, this leaves us with the last guy who can give us an outpouring of opinion.

So I take a cue from the uber-academic who knows what he is talking about.

At this moment, you should by now recognise the extent of the problem? You, as the electorate who is going to choose your next president, know absolutely next to nought about what your president does.

Eugene Tan, assistant professor of law from SMU, says that the president has “two key custodial functions” and he is a holder of the “second key”.

This means, in English, that the president must ensure that the reserves stay full and that public service does not go to waste.

Oh yes, the president also has the task of preventing cunning, lying bastards (read: populists and underqualified politicians, not clairvoyants) who have overtaken parliament from spending the nation’s wealth on Lamborghinis.

If all these still sounds very vague to you and me, it is. But that’s not all.

And then Tan admonishes us to “endeavour to keep the contest non-partisan and non-adversarial; the contest ultimately is about who can best do the job”.

But that’s essentially the same as Randy Jackson saying: “Yo dawg, may the best person win American Idol”.

Stating the obvious is fun to watch when picking a singer for TV entertainment. Not when choosing a president.

And then Tan also exhorts us in the same article “to get to know the aspiring candidates seeking to be their head of state”.

Now imagine that you have. You know all the candidates from head to toe. And then what?

At this moment, you should by now recognise the extent of the problem? You, as the electorate who is going to choose your next president, know absolutely next to nought about what your president does.

Nathan himself, not very strangely then, concedes: “What have I done? (I have) done nothing… It’s hard for me to quantify… It’s a very intangible thing.”

Nathan also said: “…although I’ve been quiet, I’ve been doing work”.

This reminds of what I tell my friends when they query me about what I did during National Service as a naval diver.

I would say, “I run around carrying a boat on my head, shouting”. For those who have done that before, you can attest that that happened quite a bit.

Therefore, naval divers are also evidently doing quite a bit of work, but in our case carried out in a very visible way because of the ruckus we would create.

But honestly, none of what we were doing was very CONSEQUENTIAL.

So, here’s the point of today’s missive: Dear Nathan, it is not really how much work you did not do while in office. It is how much you did that mattered.

But since I don’t know what you didn’t do because you’re not saying, I have no choice but to vote for George Yeo as the best guy for the job based on Sesame Street reasoning.

Because among all, he is the odd one out: He is not an endomorph.

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