Dr Tan Cheng Bock has responded to the Court of Appeal’s dismissal of his application. He is disappointed as he wanted to be a part of the upcoming Presidential Election but accepts the verdict with a heavy heart. He also thanked his supporters and promise to continue speaking up for all Singaporeans.
“As you know by now, the Court of Appeal has dismissed my appeal. I am disappointed, as are all my supporters, because we had hoped to contest in this PE (through the deliberative track) after I lost narrowly (0.34%) in PE 2011. Nevertheless, I am very comforted to know that many of you were strongly supporting me in this case. I never felt alone. For that, I sincerely thank every one of you.
Some may say that my court application was a fool’s errand. But I do not see it that way. When MP Sylvia Lim asked the Government in Parliament why they chose to start the count of 5 presidential terms with President Wee Kim Wee (resulting in 2017 being a reserved election year), the Government challenged her to go to Court for an answer. That is wrong and I felt the need to respond. I firmly believe the Government should have answered in Parliament instead of challenging a Parliamentarian to go to Court.
So I filed a case to argue what most Singaporeans felt was proper, that the count should start with the 1st Elected President Ong Teng Cheong (which would result in 2023 being a reserved election year). The Court of Appeal, however, decided that as a matter of law, the Government has discretion to start the count with President Wee Kim Wee. They issued a 66 page long judgment detailing full legal reasons. Now that the Court of Appeal has had the final say, I accept the verdict – but with a heavy heart.
My team and I will now rest, regroup and re-energise ourselves. I promise you, I will always speak up for Singaporeans and do my very best for our country.
Meanwhile, let me be first to wish the participants of the coming reserved PE 2017 all the best, and to do your very best for our country!”