Singapore’s First Female President Is Muslim
Halimah Yacob, a Muslim Malay, will be sworn in today as Singapore’s eighth president after being one of the only candidates that could meet the stringent eligibility rules for the six-year post.
In this particular election, only candidates from the minority Malay group were able to qualify. Malays form just over 13% of Singapore’s population of 3.9 million. Other candidates also had to meet strict criteria in regards to their careers – they had to either have held a top public post or have been a chief executive of a private company, with at least $370 million in shareholders’ equity.
Yacob automatically qualified as a former speaker of parliament. Due to the fact that she she had no opponents, the election went uncontested, and the 63-year-old was declared president-elect after nominations closed on Wednesday. Many Singaporeans have expressed their disappointment in the process, lamenting the fact they were unable to vote.
She also stated, “I can only say that I promise to do the best that I can to serve the people of Singapore, and that doesn’t change whether there is an election or no election.”
Yacob will not only make history as the city state’s first female president but also as a hijabi woman. This is quite strange as in Singapore, the hijab is still banned in state schools and public sector jobs that require uniforms.
Yacob is being celebrated on Twitter with an emoji created in her honor.
WE SAID THIS: Long may she reign.