President Halimah Yacob spent $220,875 in total on her election campaign, the majority of which went towards the advertising and printing of promotional materials.
She spent $198,154 in this area, of which $72,931.20 went into the printing of 20,100 posters – inclusive of a $1,800 disposal fee – according to election expenses documents made available by the Elections Department (ELD) on Saturday (7 October).
These posters, printed in anticipation of the campaigning period for the 2017 Presidential Election (PE), did not end up being used as Halimah won the election in a walkover after being declared the only candidate eligible to contest in the PE.
Other expenses listed included $29,000 spent on a “Profile Video Project”; $14,050 spent on website development; and $9,826 spent on 510 t-shirts along with 10,000 pin badges. Her team also spent $34,000 on printing 1.28 million Admail A5 cards.
Halimah’s spending on her team also included a nearly $2,000 buffet dinner catered by Islamic Restaurant on 12 September, the eve of Nomination Day. In total, she spent $3,385 on “food, refreshments and accommodation”, along with $5,992 on renting a room at the NTUC Centre on 1 Marina Boulevard.
$800,000 in donations received
Under the Presidential Elections Act, the principal election agents of PE candidates have to submit the return on election expenses and corresponding statement within 31 days of the PE’s result being declared in the Government Gazette. The expenses report includes details of donations made towards a candidate’s election campaign.
Halimah’s campaign received $800,000 in total from seven donations under the “Single Recordable Donations” category, which lists single donations of $10,000 or more. Of the seven donations, the highest was a cheque for $440,000 from a single individual.
“All unused donations raised will be returned to the kind donors,” said Halimah and her team in a press statment, which noted that she had submitted her expenses documents on 3 October.
“The donors have been encouraged by Mdm Halimah’s passion for the social causes. Many of them have indicated that they intend to make a contribution to the next cycle of the President’s Challenge,” the statement added.
For the next six months, Halimah’s return on election expenses and statement will be made available for inspection by members of the public during office hours on any working day. A $2 inspection fee will be imposed for those looking to view the documents.