​Singapore: Indian-origin Tharman Shanmugaratnam registers landslide victory in presidential election

Image Source : PTI Newly elected Singapore President Tharman Shanmugaratnam

Indian-origin Singapore-born economist, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, registered a landslide victory in Singapore’s first presidential election held in the country since 2011 on Friday (September 1).

He secured over 70 per cent ((1,746,427 votes) in the election in which 2.48 million votes were cast.

His Chinese-origin rivals Ng Kok Song and Tan Kin Lian received 15.72 per cent and 13.88 per cent respectively, the Elections Department said. Tharman became Singapore’s third Indian-origin president.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong congratulated Tharman, who served as Singapore’s Deputy prime minister from 2011 to 2019, on winning the presidential election.

“Singaporeans have chosen Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam to be our next president by a decisive margin. As head of state, he will represent us at home and abroad, and exercise custodial powers, including over the reserves and key appointments,” he said.

Lee said that both voters and candidates showed a greater understanding of the roles and duties of the president in the election.

“I have every confidence that he will carry out his duties as president with distinction,” he said.

Earlier speaking at Taman Jurong Food Centre where his supporters had gathered, Tharman said he is “truly humbled by the strong endorsement” Singaporeans have given him.

“I’m humbled by this vote – it is not just a vote for me, it is a vote for Singapore’s future, a future of optimism and solidarity. That’s what it really is. My campaign was one of optimism and solidarity, and I believe that’s what Singaporeans want. I will honour the trust that Singaporeans have placed in me and respect all Singaporeans including those who did not vote for me,” he said.

Prime Minister Lee’s People’s Action Party (PAP) had backed Tharman in the election.

This was Singapore’s first contested presidential election since 2011. Singapore in the past has had two Indian-origin presidents.

(With PTI inputs)

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