Political Education

I’ve always been very apathetic about politics – locally and overseas till this latest General Election. Reason for this is most likely because this is the first time i got to vote and so i never really bothered to think about which party i would want to vote for. Anyway, my friend and i got into a little debate about what happens to MPs & Ministers when parliament is dissolved?

I bet most people wouldn’t know the answer either… well, simply put:
1) Members of Parliament cease to be MPs because there is no more Parliament.
2) The Government and its Ministers remains till polling day.
3) The President will then pick a newly elected MP to be the new Prime Minister.
4) Together, the President & the PM will then pick the new cabinet ministers.

This is in accordance to Article 25 of the Constitution of Singapore:

Appointment of Prime Minister and Ministers
25. —(1) The President shall appoint as Prime Minister a Member of Parliament who in his judgment is likely to command the confidence of the majority of the Members of Parliament, and shall, acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister, appoint other Ministers from among the Members of Parliament:

Provided that, if an appointment is made while Parliament is dissolved, a person who was a Member of the last Parliament may be appointed but shall not continue to hold office after the first sitting of the next Parliament unless he is a Member thereof.

(2) Appointments under this Article shall be made by the President by instrument under the public seal.

Tenure of office of Prime Minister and Ministers
26. —(1) The President shall, by writing under the public seal, declare the office of Prime Minister vacant —

(a) if the Prime Minister resigns his office by writing under his hand addressed to the President; or

(b) if the President, acting in his discretion, is satisfied that the Prime Minister has ceased to command the confidence of a majority of the Members of Parliament:

Provided that, before declaring the office of Prime Minister vacant under this paragraph, the President shall inform the Prime Minister that he is satisfied as aforesaid, and, if the Prime Minister so requests, the President may dissolve Parliament instead of making such a declaration.

(2) A Minister, other than the Prime Minister, shall vacate his office —

(a) if his appointment to that office is revoked by the President, acting in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister, by instrument under the public seal; or

(b) if he resigns his office by writing under his hand addressed to the President.

(3) A person who has vacated his office as Minister may, if qualified, be again appointed as Minister from time to time.

(4)

(a) Whenever the Prime Minister is ill or absent from Singapore or has been granted leave of absence from his duties under Article 32, the functions conferred on him by this Constitution shall be exercisable by any other Minister authorised by the President, by instrument under the public seal, in that behalf.

(b) The President may, by instrument under the public seal, revoke any authority given under this clause.

(c) The powers conferred upon the President by this clause shall be exercised by him acting in his discretion, if in his opinion it is impracticable to obtain the advice of the Prime Minister owing to the Prime Minister”s illness or absence, and in any other case shall be exercised by the President in accordance with the advice of the Prime Minister.

See below for refence links:
http://singabloodypore.blogspot.com/2006/04/mr-lee-or-pm-lee.html

http://statutes.agc.gov.sg/non_version/cgi-bin/cgi_retrieve.pl?&actno=Reved-CONST&date=latest&method=part

Musical Fine Print

Just had a slight debate with my dad. He was watching the news and said that the police / govt are being unfair to a certain Wayang Party politician by detaining him. I say, just too bad. I mean, if you want to play punk in politics, then you just have to face the music.

My dad said that it was a simple case of “he forgot”. But i say that’s bullshit. If you read the “fine print” in the newspapers (i.e. if you read the whole story instead of just the headlines) , you’ll realise that Mr. Wayang wasn’t as innocent as he claimed. Oh no… it wasn’t a simple case of “i forgot in a moment of distraction”.

As Mr. Wayang’s party chairman said herself, the party never intended to field him in AMK. Hence, if he wasn’t going to be in AMK, there was no need for him to get a minority cert. Since there was no need for a minority cert, why the whole drama of him claming that he had submitted the form, wagging his finger at the election dept people and warning them about “consequences” for losing his cert??

So how to pity him now? Want to play dirty then don’t be so stupid right? Bo wey gong! (Nothing to say.) Sigh! *Shakes head*

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For background info of this post, please see:
http://multimedia.asiaone.com.sg/03f/story.html

Other interesting links:
Singapore GE 2006
GE 2006 Results
Comment by Wong Kan Seng
WP’s “Suicide Party”