Singapore

13 candidates to contest Law Society posts

For the first time in years, all the posts up for grabs in the Law Society's managing council will see a contest at its annual election today.

Some of the eight posts available will see keen competition, with more than three candidates each.

A total of 13 candidates are standing for election, seeking votes from 5,191 members through e-voting today.

Law Society president Gregory Vijayendran yesterday said the multi-cornered contests are a good development for the organisation.

"It contrasts sharply with the situation we had some years ago... when no one stepped forward during elections, such as in the middle category. I am encouraged by the impressive calibre of the candidates all around in this round," he told The Straits Times.

The society represents the legal profession and provides various services for lawyers as well as pro bono work.

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Lawyers with at least 15 years of practice comprise the senior category, while the middle category consists of lawyers with practice of less than 15 years but not less than five years. Those with less than five years' standing form the junior category.

Members can cast votes only for candidates in the same category as them.

Each candidate is elected for a two-year term to represent his category of lawyers.

The new members, together with incumbents elected or appointed last year, will form the council, which will then freshly elect the office-bearers for next year, including the president.

Manifestos pitched by candidates provided a snapshot of what lawyers from the various categories view as the key issues facing the profession.

For example, veteran lawyer Chia Boon Teck, in vying for a senior category post, argued that "having practised in large, medium and small law firms over the past 22 years, I know and understand the issues which lawyers across the board face in our day-to-day grind".