Tan Cheng Bock weighs in on the outcome of Reserved Elections


Today, Dr Tan Cheng Bock has made public comments on the outcome of PE2017:

My congratulations to President-elect Mdm Halimah Yacoob. Today she returned unopposed and will occupy the most controversial presidency in the history of Singapore. I wish her well.

Singaporeans are, however, unhappy with the walkover.

I think one reason is this: when the Commission recommended scrapping the Presidential elections and reverting to an appointed Presidency, the Government White Paper rejected the idea. They explained it was important for citizens to give the Presidency their “popular” and “direct” mandate.

In PE 2011, I stood for elections because I did not want a walkover.

In fact, I recall that in 1993, the Government’s preferred candidate was Ong Teng Cheong. Everyone knew he would win. But Dr Goh Keng Swee still went out of his way to persuade Mr Chua Kim Yeow to stand for elections. Why? To prevent a walkover and give citizens the dignity of expressing their choice.

But for PE 2017, the Government did not put up another Malay candidate aside from Mdm Halimah. Instead, 2 independent candidates, Salleh Marican and Farid Khan, valiantly stepped up. Everyone knew Mdm Halimah would win. Still, we looked forward to a poll to tell the Government what we thought about the elections. However, the PEC rejected the 2 men (contrast PE 2011 where the PEC permitted Tan Kin Lian and Tan Jee Say to contest via the deliberative track). As a result, we have a disappointing walkover.

People now feel muzzled and angry. Because when you take away our right to vote, you take away our political voice. You tell us that our choice does not matter.

PE 2017 has been a quiet affair. But there is now a deafening silence awakening the nation. We did not get a chance to speak with our vote this round, but the time will come. And when it does, it will be thunderous. Of this I am sure.


  1. When they allowed Tan Kin Lian, Tan Jee Say n your good self to contest against their preferred choice KFC, they wanna split votes, however they couldn’t risk it this round hence disqualified the 2 men. #notmypresident

  2. Within my heart I do not consider Halimah as my president. To me this election is faud. I’m looking forward to the next GE in hoping many of us who are against the doings of the PAP gov a thunderous outcome.

    • Melvin Emmanuel Chan, when PAP came to power, they too didn’t have what you just mentioned!
      IT’S people with a mindset like you that is pulling the country deeper and deeper into the abyss. Sorry, if I’m been blunt!

    • Exactly Melvin, if now is not the right time, when is? Till singapore is only liveable for the millionaire or pple of their own kind and you are forced to live here like a 3rd class citizen while u lose ur job to ft and ur children are deprived of a future and whole family forced to move out? Becos thats exactly what pap wants. Money

    • Actually all Singaporeans should be happy when there is a new president for Singapore. However, instead of being elected this president was chosen by the PAP gov. We were completely shut out and forced to accept her as “being elected” which I think we shouldn’t unless there is a fair campaign. One important factor of a president is to unite the people but this time it has caused a division even before she took office. This is sad.

    • Melvin Emmanuel Chan @ but they can keep the govt in check. Now there is no police to watch the Govt. Worst they will end up worst than the opposition. Do not take the opposition for granted. They are the last line of defence for singapore.

    • Victor Chew If you don’t believe in the worthy oppositions, then you are forever an idiot. LKY started his political base and power with postmen, labourers and washerwomen as MPs. If people think what you are thinking now, Singapore would be vassal state of Malaya. We must give them a chance to govern otherwise we are forever puppets being manipulated on the strings.

    • Melvin Emmanuel Chan opposition don’t have to form the next government. Just don’t give the PAP 2/3 majority. This is what all the oppositions have been saying for all this donkey years. But it is not getting into the majority’s brain (In population).

    • Howe Peek. I believe the worthy of opposition voices in the parliament. And perhaps one day the opposition will stike a balance in parliament where eventually a day will come where they will replace the PAP gov.

  3. This is kind of president with integrity we need not some one come from the back door. Very sad day for Singapore reserve president to have to given a seat rather than earn the seat . How can this be an acceptable to the reserve president when already it is fine to have a reserve PE.? I’m lost why these uncommon sense is accepted.

  4. Dr Tan, you’re the REAL President of Singapore outside the Istana. In the meantime, stay healthy so that you can be returned to the highest office in PE2023 after we replace the current rulers in GE2020, and amend the constitution back to what it was!

  5. I think we have to make this clear. I believe every body agrees that we are not against Mdm Halimah Yacob personally. Not against her gender, race or religion. But we are all against the undemocratic political processes handled by this ruling G. In any other situation, this kind of process would have been considered a SCAM! Everything is arranged so that there is only one outcome in favour of the ruling G. And it is very obvious that the ruling G is making it impossible for a certain man (we know who) to get a chance of being elected president. Yet they called this a “Elected Presidency”. They think we are stupid?

  6. To me she is not a people’s President, she is a PAP make President her slogan do good do together, for who if she claim to be independent ask the government to open the books if not then it is only lips service.

  7. PAP n PM Lee HL were afraid to lose if it were a 2 or 3 horses race….fundamentally she does NOT have the basics to be a chosen President. She would have lost even if they split the votes as ground feeling was absolutely ‘unhappy’. Last GE, we got 2 ‘Tans’ were, in my humble opinion, wrongly placed to be PE candidate…a straight fight: Dr. Tan would have won.

  8. Fake democracy. Show contempt of the court of public opinions. dishonorable son want to keep power to himself and the Party Against People. best at sucking money out of its subjects while enjoying its ownself millions…like some wicked ancìent chinese emperors.

  9. As far as my memory jolts me. The GE2015 was supposedly a wake up call that never existed ‘coz a lot of them feels like it’s better to be in their comfort zone. To them the Rally of 2015 was like a Korean Drama……..for entertainment only.

  10. PE2017 – Has WP failed Singaporeans?

    WP has let people down. They should have boycotted the swearing ceremony to reflect people anger.

    WP has no desire to govern – they just want to have half a dozen or dozen MPs in parliament and give speeches in parliament as well as during WP rallies.

    The way in which WP has allowed itself to be floored in AHPETC saga makes me wonder does WP even know how to play politics like PAP does?

    Where is the fire, WP?

    WP is a meek opposition. When this fixing started last year, they should called out PAP and condemned in strongest possible way.

    Even TCB also looks like a simpleton. Instead of going to court, he should have organized indefinite daily fast at Hong Lim to protest when the commission was doing hearing to protest against brazen misuse of power.

    Singaporeans are pussy cats. Generation of LKY rule has resulted in very amateurish politicians who don’t know how to play politics.

    We are doomed.

  11. Mr Tan Cheng Bock expected “a thunderous response” in the future. I think he will de disappointed again…… from what i experienced, if the opposition rally has more ppl…. the votes or margin actually shrunk…… “雷声大,雨点小。” Lets not disappoint him again.

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