Former speaker of parliament, Halimah Yacob on Wednesday emerged as Singapore ’s eighth president after a “walkover” election that saw no other contenders run for the position.
Yacob, 63, was the only candidate deemed eligible to run in the country’s Elections Department after the other two contenders, Salleh Marican and Farid Khan, were both denied eligibility, having fallen short of a constitutional rule that required any candidate from the private sector to have led a company with shareholder equity of at least 500 million Singapore dollars (372 million dollars).
Yacob, broke the record as first woman to occupy president’s office and Singapore’s first Malay president in 47 years.
Halimah in a speech at the Elections Department office said:
“Although this is a reserved election, I’m not a reserved president.
“I am a president for everyone, regardless of race, language, religion or creed.
“A proud moment for Singapore, for multiculturalism and multi-racialism.”
Yacob is expected to be sworn into office on Thursday.
The president, however, holds ceremonial powers as executive powers lies in the hands of the Prime Minister or members of the cabinet.