03 Sep '11, 6am

Chances of a Malay president dimmer

SINCE the government of Mr Goh Chok Tong changed the presidency to an elected post in 1991 and set up a vetting committee on eligibility, no Malay Singaporean has contested the post. Singapore has had only one Malay president - the late Yusof Ishak, our first head of state. There is also a paucity of Malay Cabinet ministers. The present Cabinet has only one Malay minister - Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts Yaacob Ibrahim. On the other hand, Indian Singaporeans, whose population is about two-thirds that of Malay Singaporeans, have four Cabinet ministers, with one of them, Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam - who holds the two portfolios of Finance and Manpower - doubling as Deputy Prime Minister. In fact, Malays, who comprise 13.4 per cent of the population, are like a far smaller community - the Eurasians. Each has had only one president. The current trend sugg...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/STForum/Story/STIStory_708889...

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