IMDA truncates Tan Kin Lian’s broadcast speech; Presidential candidate responds

SINGAPORE: Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) has truncated sections of a speech meant to be delivered by Mr Tan Kin Lian, a Presidential Election 2023 candidate and former CEO of NTUC Income, for the national broadcast on Thursday evening.

According to Mr Tan, IMDA asserted that parts of Mr Tan’s address fell outside the jurisdiction of the Singapore President’s powers.

Mr Tan’s statements, which he deemed pivotal to his campaign, included promises to convey the hardships and aspirations of the Singaporean people to the government.

The truncated part of his speech:

I will highlight this overall investment strategy (i.e. to invest the reserves soundly) to the professional investment managers to achieve the desired results.

The actual monitoring will be the duty of the board of directors, but they will receive my advice and guidance on the approach to be taken.

Beyond these constitutional duties, I have a vision – to use the president’s office to influence policies that will make a better life for the people of Singapore. I will focus on three fundamental areas, crucial to the well-being of our citizens: bringing down the cost of living, ensuring affordable housing for all, and securing jobs that provide a sense of stability and a path to progress.

On his campaign website, Mr Tan elaborated on using the president’s office to shape policies favoring citizens in areas such as the cost of living, housing affordability, and job security.

In particular, he signalled his intent to advise the prime minister to reconsider the scheduled 1% GST increase in 2024.

Defending his stance, Mr. Tan articulated that he was not attempting to mislead voters by overpromising.

He emphasized that he had made it abundantly clear in numerous addresses that he would utilize the presidency to relay the citizens’ sentiments and concerns to the government.

Mr Tan remains hopeful about persuading the Prime Minister and his cabinet to revise existing policies for the betterment of the Singaporean populace.

Presidential candidates to deliver their speeches on national broadcast on 24 and 30 August

Details about the upcoming 10-minute presidential candidate broadcasts slated for 24 and 30 August were unveiled by IMDA on Wednesday.

Singaporeans will be able to tune into messages from the three presidential aspirants across 19 free-to-air television and radio channels, encompassing all four official languages.

Mediacorp will offer voiceovers and subtitles, ensuring accessibility, when the language spoken by a candidate does not align with the official language of the channel.

Confirmed candidates for this election cycle include former GIC investment head, Mr Ng Kok Song, 75; ex-senior minister from People’s Action Party, Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, 66; and former NTUC Income leader, Mr Tan Kin Lian, 75.

With the elections scheduled for 1 September, over 2.7 million Singaporeans are expected to cast their votes, determining the nation’s ninth president.

The initial broadcast on Thursday, 24 August, will feature the candidates in alphabetical order based on the electoral roll.

Each candidate has been granted up to 10 minutes per language for their respective broadcasts.

The broadcasts will occur simultaneously on 24 and 30 August, with the full schedule available for public viewing.

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