9 New NMPs Selected, Outspoken Economist Walter Theseira the Wildcard

Nine new Nominated Members of Parliament have been selected and will be formally appointed come 26 Sept by President Halimah Yacob.

The new batch include:

Labour unionist Arasu Duraisamy
Sakae Holdings chairman Douglas Foo Peow Yong
Executive director of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra Ho Wee San
Communication and technology professor Lim Sun Sun
Founder of inter-religious non-profit group Roses of Peace Abbas Ali Mohamed Irshad
Corporate social responsibility consultant Anthea Ong Lay Theng
President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore Irene Quay Siew Ching
Labour economist and associate professor Walter Edgar Theseira
Paralympian swimmer Yip Pin Xiu

Associate Professor Walter Theseira, could prove to be the wildcard among the batch.

The outspoken economist has in the past raised relevant though controversial views, such as the proposed scrapping of CPF for use in housing purchases.

Dr Theseira, who has a PhD from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, said earlier this year that “the CPF system tries to do a little too much, and we should consider focusing CPF on retirement and health…I do believe there is some over-investment in housing, which creates retirement risks if housing values do not grow, and this over-investment is because Singaporeans see housing as a way of unlocking their CPF funds.”

The 40-year-old added that “a CPF system focused on retirement and health would require lower contribution rates, and allow people more choices in using their higher take-home income on housing, investments, business, and family.”

Meanwhile, 26-year-old Paralympic swimmer Yip Pin Xiu is set to be the youngest Singaporean to be appointed a NMP.

Previously, the youngest person to assume the post was Eunice Olson at the age of 27 back in 2004.

The NMP scheme was introduced in 1990 as a means to provide independent and non-partisan views during parliamentary debates.

Candidates are selected by a Special Select Committee of Parliament.

NMPs cannot be members of a political party.


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