DPM Tharman at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January this year. Photo: Associated Press
Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam ruled himself out as a candidate to become Singapore’s prime minister on Wednesday (28 September), saying that a few of the fourth-generation leaders have the potential to be “first among equals”.
Tharman was responding to a question from the media on the results of a survey commissioned by Yahoo Singapore, which showed that 69 per cent of 897 Singaporean respondents would support him as a candidate to be prime minister. The survey, released on Monday (26 September), was conducted by market research consultancy Blackbox.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an event, Tharman said, “Just to be absolutely clear, I am not the man for PM. It’s not me.”
“I have expressed myself quite clearly and categorically: I know who I am and I know how I want to serve.”
Tharman said he is confident that one of Singapore’s fourth-generation leaders is capable of leading the country forward as the next prime minister.
“I can tell you from my working with them, from my observing them that there are a few of them with that potential to become first among equals during the next term of government. I am confident of that,” Tharman said in a video posted by The Straits Times.
“Some of us in the third generation will be around to support them.”
Video posted on YouTube by The Straits Times