SINGAPORE: A former teacher who registered his eligibility to mount a presidential bid puzzled more than a few people when he said during an interview that he had been Singapore’s president in 1951, although when questioned further, he revealed he wasn’t born until the following year.
Mr Seng’s interview with a reporter was posted on the TikTok account @sgprimememesters on Wednesday (June 14), one day after eligibility forms for this year’s Presidential Election, scheduled to be held by Sept 13, was made available.
It has since been viewed over 375,000 times and has received hundreds of comments.
Second presidential hopeful to show up at elections department office is ex-secondary school teacher Seng Soon Kia #singapore
“Second presidential hopeful to show up at elections department office is ex-secondary school teacher Seng Soon Kia,” the caption reads.
When the female interviewer asked Mr Seng why he was at the Elections Department, he simply said, “I want to be president lor.”
She goes on to ask how old he is, and he gives her his birthdate, March 16, 1952, which makes him 71 years old.
Mr Seng, it seems, has availed of the forms in the past but tells her that he does not know if he “has a chance” today.
The interview takes a surprising turn when he announces, however, “I was Singapore’s President in 1951,” adding that he had held office for a year from 1951 to 1952.
The reporter then asks him, “Weren’t you born in 1952?”
“Correct,” he says.
Later in the video, she asks him if he’s familiar with the criteria to run for President and whether he thinks he’ll meet the requirements.
And after he says he thinks so, she asks if he runs or owns any businesses.
Mr Seng says in reply that he was a secondary school technical teacher and taught woodwork from 1971 to 1988.
To qualify as a presidential candidate, individuals from the private sector must have held a top corporate executive position for a minimum of three years.
Additionally, the company’s average annual shareholders’ equity during its tenure must exceed S$500 million and maintain a net profit. The company cannot face liquidation or bankruptcy within three years after the candidate departs from their executive role. /TISG
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