Singapore

Among 9 new NMPs are an Olympian, a dental surgeon and union leader

Among them are an Olympian, a dental surgeon and union leader

An Olympic swimmer, a conservation scientist and an economics professor are among the nine new Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs).

Mr Mark Chay, 38; Professor Koh Lian Pin, 44; and Professor Hoon Hian Teck, 61, like the rest, are all first-time NMPs, and will be appointed by President Halimah Yacob for a 2½-year term. Their names were announced by Parliament yesterday.

The others are: NTUC vice-president Abdul Samad Abdul Wahab, 48; security industry association head Raj Joshua Thomas, 41; Sistic chairman Janet Ang, 61; GuocoLand group managing director Cheng Hsing Yao, 49; dental surgeon and National Youth Council member Shahira Abdullah, 33; and Singapore Medical Association president Tan Yia Swam, 40.

The nine were selected by a Special Select Committee of Parliament, chaired by Speaker Tan Chuan-Jin.

They were selected from a total of 61 names, 46 of whom applied on their own. The remaining 15 names were submitted by the seven functional groups representing business and industry; labour; the professions; tertiary education institutions; social service organisations; civic and people sector; and the media, arts and sports organisations.

In announcing the list, Mr Tan said: "With many high-calibre candidates stepping forward for consideration, it was not an easy task for the Select Committee to nominate the maximum of nine NMPs.

"After careful deliberation, we have determined that the nine nominees have fulfilled all constitutional criteria and are eligible for appointment."

Key criteria in assessing each candidate was whether he or she had rendered distinguished public service, brought honour to the Republic, and would be able to reflect as wide a range of independent and non-partisan views as possible, among others, as set out in the Constitution on the selection of NMPs.

The NMP scheme was introduced in 1990 to ensure a wide representation of views in Parliament. There can be up to nine NMPs each term.

Leader of the House Indranee Rajah, who is Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and was on the eight-member committee, hopes the new NMPs will bring fresh perspectives and ideas as Singapore works to navigate the Covid-19 pandemic and emerge stronger.

The others in the committee were Ministers Chan Chun Sing, Gan Kim Yong, Maliki Osman and Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister of State Gan Siow Huang, and Workers' Party MP for Aljunied GRC Leon Perera.

President Halimah will present the Instruments of Appointment to the NMPs at the Istana next Thursday, and the NMPs will take their oath at the next sitting of Parliament next month.

Singapore Politics