Parliamentary Elections in Singapore - Composition and Term of Parliament - Qualifications For Parliamentary Candidates

Qualifications For Parliamentary Candidates

Persons are qualified to be elected or appointed as MPs if:

  • they are Singapore citizens;
  • they are 21 years of age or above on the day of nomination for election;
  • their names appear in a current register of electors;
  • they are resident in Singapore at the date of nomination and have been so resident for an aggregate period of not less than ten years before that date;
  • they are able, with a degree of proficiency sufficient to enable them to take an active part in Parliamentary proceedings, to speak and, unless incapacitated by blindness or some other physical cause, to read and write at least one of the following languages: English, Malay, Mandarin and Tamil; and
  • they are not otherwise disqualified from being MPs under Article 45 of the Constitution.

Article 45 provides that persons are not qualified to be MPs if:

  • they are and have been found or declared to be of unsound mind;
  • they are undischarged bankrupts;
  • they hold offices of profit;
  • having been nominated for election to Parliament or the office of President or having acted as election agent to a person so nominated, they have failed to lodge any return of election expenses required by law within the time and in the manner required;
  • they have been convicted of an offence by a court of law in Singapore or Malaysia and sentenced to imprisonment for a term of not less than one year or to a fine of not less than S$2,000 and have not received a free pardon;
  • they have voluntarily acquired the citizenship of, or exercised rights of citizenship in, a foreign country or has made a declaration of allegiance to a foreign country; or
  • they are disqualified under any law relating to offences in connection with elections to Parliament or the office of President by reason of having been convicted of such an offence or having in proceedings relating to such an election been proved guilty of an act constituting such an offence.

A person's disqualification for having failed to properly lodge a return of election expenses or having been convicted of an offence may be removed by the President. If the President has not done so, the disqualification ceases at the end of five years from the date on which the return was required to be lodged or, as the case may be, the date on which the person convicted was released from custody or the date on which the fine was imposed. In addition, a person is not disqualified for acquiring or exercising rights of foreign citizenship or declared allegiance to a foreign country if he or she did so before becoming a Singapore citizen.

Read more about this topic:  Parliamentary Elections In Singapore, Composition and Term of Parliament

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