According to Minister for Muslim Affairs Yaacob Ibrahim’s speech in Parliament yesterday (Nov 7), Malay Singaporeans told him that they want a Malay as Singapore President:
“While younger Malays have grown up with meritocracy as the basis of how society is organised, and appear reluctant to see a circuit breaker in the Elected Presidency (EP) to ensure minority representation, the desire to see a Malay President cuts across the community. Many from the community would, in closed-door discussions, raise their hands in wanting to see a Malay President.”
Minister Yaacob then used an example from 1968 to prove his racist allegation:
“In 1968, when my eldest brother, Mr Mohd Ismail Ibrahim, was named Singapore’s first Malay President’s Scholar, the Paya Lebar airport was swamped by Malays to see him off. On the other hand, his brother’s schoolmate, Mr Christopher Catherasoo, who also bagged the scholarship, was accompanied only by his immediate family.”
Minister Yaacob then asserted that just because there isn’t many Malays in leadership positions today, there is a need to reserve the Presidential seat for Malays:
“The truth is that we do not have many Malays in key positions of power and leadership. Having one being a President is not just nice but timely. The desire is particularly strong among older Malays, having lived under Singapore’s first and only Malay President, the late Mr Yusof Ishak, who died in office more than four decades ago.”
Minister Yaacob then alleged that Singaporeans are racist and that they do not know about it:
“Although surveys show that despite efforts at forging a common Singaporean identity, people still tend to drift towards their own kind. I have come to recognise that we need such policies to avoid the pitfalls of other societies that have ignored the human tendency to behave in tribal ways and insisted on seeing the world as they sincerely believed it to be. These societies have suffered for it.”
The racist decision to re-write the country’s Constitution to allow only the Malay race to contest in the next Presidential election and also reduce the President powers to that of a puppet position controlled by the Prime Minister, was greatly supported by current President Tony Tan and Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who called it a “stabilizer that prevents political gridlock”.
Other PAP MPs like Tin Pei Ling, Tan Wu Meng and Murali Pillai also took up Parliamentary time expressing support for the decision.
The changes to the Elected Presidency is made in accordance to dictator Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s wishes to prevent former Presidential candidate Dr Tan Cheng Bock from contesting.