Presidential hopeful Farid Khan has submitted his application to run in September’s Presidential Election (PE).
“We have submitted the documents and with confidence I can say that I will be approved. I qualify,” said the 62-year-old chairman of Bourbon Offshore Asia Pacific at a media doorstop on Thursday (24 August) outside the Elections Department, where he and his team handed over the forms.
This year’s PE has been reserved for Malays and prospective candidates will have to obtain a Malay Community Certificate from the Community Committee in order to be eligible to run. Those from the private sector will also have to be either the chairman or chief executive officer of a company with a paid-up capital of at least $500 million in order to qualify.
“I’m ready for any contest. Either two-corner (or) three-corner, I’m ok. I’m ready for that,” said Farid.
He added that would be disappointed if the election turned out to be a walkover but also expressed confidence that there would be a contest.
Thus far, only two other prospective candidates – Second Chance Properties chief executive Salleh Marican and former speaker of parliament Halimah Yacob – have indicated their interest in running for president. Salleh submitted his application forms on Wednesday, while Halimah has yet to do so.
Joking that he needed a “break” from the media attention after turning in his application, Farid added that he hoped the interviews he had done have shown people three things: his “presidential” side, his “human” side and his “jovial” side.
The one thing he cannot be, Farid said, is a “puppet”. “I tried to be a puppet. I’m not a good puppet. I cannot be a puppet,” he said.
Farid also commented on the Court of Appeal’s rejection of former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock’s appeal regarding the timing of this year’s PE. Tan had filed a constitutional challenge on the PE, which was earlier dismissed by the High Court.
“He’s (Tan) already accepted it (the court’s ) decision. I think that’s the wise thing to do,” said Farid.