It is the last campaign day before the Singaporeans go to the ballot box.
Since the news that the general election (GE) will take place in Singapore on July 10 this year, the island has been full of politics.
The main actors of the GE – political parties – are the city's talks, but many tend to forget the underdog of the elections: the returnee (RO).
Returnees … Who?
In parliamentary systems around the world, the RO is responsible for monitoring the elections.
The RO in Singapore is perhaps best known for announcing election results on election day.
Most Singaporeans like to remember RO Yam Ah Mee from GE 2011, who was very popular for announcing the results because of his stoic expression and monotonous voice.
RO Yam Ah Mee from GE 2011 / Photo credit: SGCafe
In addition to announcing the results of general and presidential elections, the RO is also responsible for overseeing the implementation of all parliamentary elections.
This includes leading thousands of election officials who run polling stations and count ballots.
Decisions made at the discretion of the RO also include approving campaign material. According to the Singapore Electoral Ministry, the official stamp issued by the RO is required before campaign material can be published.
Williamson Lee of the opposition Singapore People & # 39; s Party (SPP) previously accused the incumbent People & # 39; s Action Party of hanging posters that did not bear the official stamp of the RO.
According to the Parliamentary Elections Act (128), the RO can also request a temporary suspension or postponement of the election in a polling station if the vote is likely to be hampered by causes such as unrest, violence or natural disasters.
This year's returnee
The RO will be appointed by the Prime Minister if he sees fit.
The Minister may appoint a registration officer and a return officer, as well as deputy registration officers that he considers appropriate from time to time.
– Law on parliamentary elections
Photo credit: Jurong Port
Tan Meng Dui was named RO 2020 for GE 2020 by the Prime Minister's Office.
RO Tan is a former deputy secretary at the Department of Defense headquarters and was a Brigadier General of the Singapore Armed Forces.
The current CEO of the National Environment Agency also has a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University in the United States.
He replaced Ng Wai Choong, who acted as RO in GE 2015 and in the 2017 presidential election.
This is his first choice for returnees since his appointment came into effect in 2018. However, he has experience as a Group Assistant Returning Officer (Garo) during GE 2015.
After the vote count is complete, watch for Tan Tan’s announcement of GE 2020 results this Friday, July 10th, on live TV or in various live streams.
Selected image source: Jurong Port / Edgar Su via Reuters
You can find the latest election-related news on our GE 2020 microsite. Find out which constituency you belong to and who is running where on the campaign field.