Tony Tan Keng Yam (Chinese name: 陈庆炎; pinyin: Chen Qing Yan; born on 7 February 1940, in Singapore) is the seventh President of Singapore.
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Don't really know much about him
In the race to become president, while the Straits Times polls revealed that he seemed to have a larger proportion of the pie thinking that he would win, I was surprised to find out when he won. In fact, it seemed that this time, the four tans that were in the race to become president had their own strengths and merits.
Tony Tan, while had been a part of PAP before, did not strike me as one who did much during the presidential race. While I had collected a Tony tan hat, that seemed to be the only publicity gimmick that had won people over. Even Tan Cheng Bok seemed to try to reach out to the mass public via the internet and playing the ukulele.
Not my choice president
While I admit that he does not really look the part of a prominent figure of Singapore, I refrain from judging him based on his looks, but his actions so far makes me want to link them together. Yes, I know that based on the current rules, he does not have much of an influence over the government and politics compared to other nations' presidents like that of the USA, but I feel that as such a important figure, the very least he could do is to listen to the people and try to relay those opinions to the government.
However, I feel that he has not been doing so. Sure, the previous president did not do as much either, but does that mean he has to follow suit? The people elect a president to be one of their representatives, and in such a time when the people are so upset with the government, shouldn't he step up and do something, whatever he can, or even press on to challenge and try to remove some of his constraints so that he can do more?
His history of being an MP from the People's Action Party is not helping his position any better, and there are people who believe that he is a puppet fielded by them. While as a president he has cut off political ties and assumed a different position, his reluctance to do anything against the interests of the government that has a PAP majority just makes people believe in such a thing. Unless he steps up and starts listening and trying to help the people, I would definitely not see him as a choice president.
Not a fan
To me, a president should be someone without affiliation to the ruling party. Someone who dares put his neck on the line and risk his career in the name of doing what he believes is right for Singapore. Someone who is not concerned with playing the political game. Someone LOVED by the people and commands respect even from those who are not on his side.
Tony Tan said this at the last presidential candidate broadcast: "Some people argue that the President must take a public stand on current issues. I hear and share the concerns of Singaporeans. But policies are debated in Parliament and implemented by the Government..."
No Tony, what we need is a president who speaks up about issues concerning the people and for the people. Please act with the authority of the president or people are just going continue thinking this is just a symbolic position, and who can blame them? I feel Singapore's best president is always going to be Ong Teng Cheong and I long for the day where we can have a president so in touch and loved by Singaporeans again.
Show him the money!
Presidents in Singapore typically doesn't hold much influence over political matters. After Ong Teng Cheong's multiple endeavors to effect various changes for the good of the common Singaporean, I can only imagine presidential powers being curtailed even more since. That's why our beloved Mr Nathan is only known for his presidential wave and appearances in events like the President's Star Charity.
Today, we have Tony Tan as our president. Unlike Nathan the great teddy bear, our current president looks, in a word, scheming. With the country already being run like a corporation focused on GDP, do we really need another financial guy at the head of the ship? Even as a figurehead, or rather, especially as a figurehead, I'd prefer a president who is more attuned to the common people.
Admittedly, it's early days still. But I'm not holding my breath.
I am largely apathetic when it comes to our new president, Mr Tony Tan. Despite being the winner of a presidential election that was hotly contested for the first time in decades, I do not have much of an impression of him.
In Singapore, the president is mostly a symbolic figure, as running of the nation is largely left to the prime minister and his parliament. However, this does not mean that it is a useless position - he controls our finances, nuff' said. But this also leads to most Singaporeans not knowing much about our presidents, and assuming they do nothing at all.
It is still relatively early in his term. Hopefully he can serve as a good politician and act as a good diplomat to the other heads of states. After all, our nation depends on good ties and bilateral relations in order to stay relevant in the world.
Hmmm...Col Sanders look-alike?
Our current president. I can't honestly give him a full review as yet. Perhaps in a few years time.
He came into the Istana after one of the most highly publicised and highly charged presidential elections in history. What I can say is that the people had chosen but whether they had chosen well remains to be seen as the role of President is largely ceremonial and is of no real effect to most of us.
But he does have very big shoes to fill, coming into office following 2 well loved Presidents in Presidents Wee Kim Wee and S.R Nathan.
I hope that he has the guts to do the right thing.