SINGAPORE: Presidential hopeful Mohamed Salleh Marican submitted his application forms on Wednesday (Aug 23) to contest the upcoming reserved election, becoming the first among three potential candidates to do so.
Mr Marican, chief executive of Second Chance Properties, turned up at the Elections Department at about 3.30pm.
Mr Marican said he was confident that he would be eligible for the race.
"I have spent more than 100 hours to ensure that I do my very best to answer all the questions," he told reporters outside the Elections Department. "In the end, it depends on the Presidential Elections Committee to decide whether I’m eligible or not. But I’m confident that I should be eligible."
"I think I qualify on all the criteria except the S$500 million shareholder equity, so if I do not qualify, it will because of that particular criteria," he said, adding that he just needs to convince the Presidential Elections Committee that he is able to manage a S$500 million company.
"I believe I can easily manage a S$500 million company because the thinking process, the evaluation, whether it is S$250 million or S$500 million, is the same," he said.
The two other prospective candidates are former Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob and chairman of Bourbon Offshore Asia Farid Khan Kaim Khan. They are expected to file their papers soon, with the election likely to take place in September.
"I’m ready, my team is ready and I believe all Singaporeans are ready to vote," Mr Marican said. "It would be good for Singapore if there is a contest. For if there is a contest, the people of Singapore would be satisfied that they have a chance to choose their next president."
Following changes to the Elected Presidency, this year’s election has been reserved for candidates from the Malay community.
All potential candidates will have to apply for the Certificate of Eligibility, providing details such as employment history and submitting supporting documents.
Applicants from the private sector like Mr Marican and Mr Farid will have to show that they helmed a company with at least S$500 million in shareholders’ equity.
For the first time in a Presidential Election, interested parties will also have to submit a Community Declaration form to the newly established Community Committee. This is to certify that the prospective candidate belongs to the community which the election has been reserved for.