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Leadership succession and Deputy Prime Ministers




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By: Andrew Loh

With the government expressing concerns that we may not have a minority-race Elected President if the current election laws are not tweaked, here is another similar concern – but this time regarding the position of deputy prime minister.

In post-Independence Singapore, we have had 11 DPMs.

And here is the interesting thing, the 11 have been:

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8 Chinese.
3 Indians.
0 Malay.
0 Eurasian.

Lee Kuan Yew’s Cabinet had one Indian DPM – S Rajaratnam.

Goh Chok Tong’s Cabinet had no minority-race DPM.

Lee Hsien Loong’s Cabinet has had 2 Indian DPMs – S Jayakumar and Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

But all have not had any Malay as DPM.

Is it a concern? Should it be a concern?

In this era, it seems race and religion have taken on more prominence, and perhaps also more importance.

While the PAP itself may rationalise its way out of why Singapore is not ready for a non-Chinese Prime Minister, how about a Malay DPM?

Or has there never been a Malay minister deemed capable enough to be DPM – in all of our 51 years?

Maybe something to think about?

Republished with permission from Andrew Loh’s FB.

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