Mr Ooi Boon Ewe, Dr Tan Cheng Bock, Mr Tan Kin Lian, Mr Geoarge Yeo.
The line-up is not quite set. Mr Ooi and Dr Tan have collected the application form. Mr Tan Kin Lian’s friend has collected his application form for him although it appears that Mr Tan is undecided due to concerns that his wife has about him running for President. (Maybe, he should remind her that she might get to have her photograph hung on the wall of every government office/building. 🙂 )
George Yeo is mulling over contesting.
Mr Ooi would almost certainly be rejected as not qualifying under the stringent requirements set for the candidacy as President. Dr Tan, Mr Tan and Mr George Yeo may be the only serious contenders if all of them throw in their applications.
So far, the only thing that seems certain is that Dr Tan will be submitting his application.
Where is the PAP-‘approved’ candidate? This is surely what all of us are wondering. It shouldn’t be the case that we are expecting an officially sanctioned pro-ruling party candidate for the Presidential election. But, given the history of the office, Singaporeans have come to expect that there will be an officially approved candidate.
Just before the General Elections, many of us expected that Abdullah Tarmugi may be presenting himself as a Presidential candidate. He stepped down as the Speaker of Parliament. Right now, there is no indication that he might put himself forward as a candidate.
Maybe, just maybe, the PM and the Cabinet have decided that we really need a revolutionary change in our politics. Maybe, they decided that this time around no officially ‘approved’ candidate would be put forward. Maybe, just maybe, we might be in for a Presidential Election involving truly independent candidates.
But, of course, many would question how independent would George Yeo or Dr Tan Cheng Bock be considering their long track record as PAP men. Perhaps Dr Tan might fit the bill of a free spirit. He was willing to publicly lock horns with the PAP leaders.
Whether the President is going to be a free spirit or a yes man is the difference between whether he is going to cut the budget or just cut ribbons.