Tan Kin Lian

SINGAPORE — Tan Kin Lian has drawn attention to the demanding timeline of the presidential election process, which includes the issuance of the writ of election, the announcement of the certificate of eligibility, and nomination day.

Tan is the fourth and final contender to throw his name into the race for the presidency. The other three presidential hopefuls are; former senior minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, ex-GIC chief investment officer Ng Kok Song, and businessman George Goh.

“This does not allow sufficient time for the candidates to come to an agreement to avoid splitting the votes of their common supporters. After the nomination, the election will be held on 1 September, 10 days later. This allows nine days for campaigning, excluding the cooling day. It takes time to print these materials and to put them up,” posted Tan on his social media page.

Prospective candidates also have to navigate the challenging financial decision of printing campaign materials and addressing other logistical needs. However, it remains uncertain whether they meet the eligibility criteria to qualify for the presidential elections.

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“The amount to be spent on 5,000 posters and a few hundred banners could amount to $50,000, maybe more. Is it fair for a candidate to spend this money, and risk having it being totally wasted?” shared Tan, who contested in the 2011 Presidential Election.

Nevertheless, Tan added that he had given his campaign team instructions to print the necessary materials. He is willing to take the risk and potentially waste the $50,000 if he does not receive the certificate of eligibility.

“The risk and uncertainty could have been avoided if there is a clear period of 10 days between the release of the decision of the presidential election committee and the submission of the nomination. Why should this be compressed to one day?” added Tan, who is being proposed by Tan Jee Say and seconded by Lim Tean, for his presidential nomination.

“This is unfair, and it is unnecessary.” 

The writ of election was issued on Aug 11, just hours after Tan officially launched his presidential campaign. The deadline to submit the certificate of eligibility is Aug 17, and the Presidential Elections Committee will announce the outcome by August 21.

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Nomination Day will be on Aug 22, and if more than one candidate received their certificate of eligibility, Polling Day will be on Sept 1. The campaign will be from Aug 22 to Aug 30, and the Cooling off Day is Aug 31.

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