Through the question-and-answer phase, Mr Tan gave his views on a variety of matters, from the dying penalty and Singapore’s reserves to the rental of Ridout Street bungalows by ministers.
Analysts have repeatedly identified that the top of state in Singapore can’t set insurance policies, however Mr Tan has continued to talk about points reminiscent of the price of residing and housing.
On Saturday, he acknowledged that the President will not be concerned in policymaking, however mentioned he want to dialogue with the Prime Minister and supply his concepts.
The presidential hopeful mentioned Singapore will be merciful to drug mules, and that “a lot of them come from very poor households”.
“Very often, they weren’t conscious, they had been simply tricked into conveying the medication. I’ll actually suppose that we must always have the mercy,” he mentioned.
Mr Tan mentioned he would method the Cupboard earlier than it makes its choice.
“If the Cupboard decides towards me, which they’ve the ability to do, will probably be not so respectful,” he mentioned. “I’ll ask the Cupboard to respect the President.”
In response to the Structure, the President can grant pardon to offenders “on the recommendation of the Cupboard”.
Dr Felix Tan, a political analyst at Nanyang Technological College (NTU), mentioned Mr Tan can all the time give his viewpoint to the Cupboard.
“It’s not only a one-way observe and that’s the manner it must be executed,” he mentioned. Dr Tan additionally famous that there’s a authorized course of that must be accomplished earlier than such a choice reaches the President.
Mr Tan mentioned there could also be issues that pardoning one individual means everybody else should obtain the identical remedy, and there shall be an inflow of drug traffickers in Singapore.
“I don’t consider in that, I believe it’s okay to be merciful,” he mentioned. However he added that if there may be certainly a flood of drug offenders, he shall be “not so forgiving”.
SHOULD PRESIDENTS BE APPOINTED?
In response to a remark about guidelines for presidential candidates, Mr Tan mentioned he agreed that the principles must be modified.
“We spend a lot time to elect a president after which we find yourself telling the president these are the belongings you can’t do,” he mentioned to laughter from the viewers.
Calling it an “unproductive train”, he mentioned he believes it might be higher to return to the previous system the place the President is appointed by the parliament.
Mr Tan additionally mentioned having a Council of Presidential Advisers is difficult, and that’s another excuse why he thinks the president must be appointed as an alternative of elected.
NO NEED TO KEEP RESERVES A SECRET
On the subject of Singapore’s Reserves, Mr Tan mentioned he doesn’t suppose the determine must be saved secret.
The Ministry of Finance beforehand mentioned it’s not in Singapore’s nationwide curiosity to disclose the total measurement of her reserves as a result of that might make it simpler for the markets to mount “speculative assaults on the Singapore greenback” throughout susceptible occasions.
Mr Tan mentioned he disagrees. “In response to any individual who has labored within the Ministry of Finance earlier than, he advised me the prospect of being attacked is sort of small, and I agreed with him.”
“I will surely have most well-liked that we agree that there isn’t a want for secrecy, why don’t we simply inform the individuals?” he mentioned.
Requested whether or not the President can reveal Singapore’s reserves, NTU’s Dr Tan identified that it’s thought-about a state secret, and the President will not be above the legislation.
“I don’t suppose that the President is entitled in any technique to reveal a state secret,” he mentioned. “There shall be penalties.”
Mr Tan additionally repeated that he thinks Singapore has been saving an excessive amount of within the reserves.