Leon Perera makes an impassioned speech against amendments to the Constitution

The Parliament on 9 Nov voted to amend Singapore’s constitution. All elected Members of Parliament voted on the amendment, and besides 6 Members from the Workers’ Party (WP), all others voted for the amendment.

Non-Constituency Member of Parliament (NCMP) Leon Perera who spoke on the topic, made an impassioned speech against the amendment. He did not vote on the Amendment Bill as NCMPs and Nominated Members of Parliament (NMP) are not allowed to vote on such matters.

In his speech, Mr Perera pointed out the the amendments were not shared with voters before the 2015 General Election, nor were they approved by a public referendum. The WP called for a referendum on the Amendment.

Mr Perera said that the amendments are not trivial because they give the unelected Council of Presidential Advisers power to block a Presidential veto and return it to Parliament, raise the bar for automatic eligibility of Presidential candidates and introduce hiatus-triggered reserved Presidential elections for specific races.

Adding that the Constitution is the framework for Singapore’s political system, he wondered what new Constitutional amendments will be made after the next General Election.