Former presidential candidate Tan Cheng Bock’s constitutional challenge against the Attorney-General’s Chambers (AGC) on the timing of the reserved Elected Presidency (EP) will likely take place in late June.
According to reports, the tentative date for the hearing was decided on Monday (22 May) at a pre-trial conference at the High Court, which took place in chambers. Tan was not present at the conference.
Earlier this month, Tan filed an affidavit to the High Court to challenge the counting of five terms of the EP to trigger this year’s reserved election. The upcoming presidential election is reserved for Malay candidates and will be held in September, the government had announced.
The 76-year-old former Ayer Rajah MP, who held a media conference in March about the issue, questioned the advice given by the AGC to the government that the first term of the EP began with President Wee Kim Wee.
Tan said that the election should be an open one. “The AGC should have counted the five most recent presidential terms produced by open elections. This starts with President Ong Teng Cheong,” he said.
Calling it “a matter of national importance”, Tan said this month that he had engaged Queen’s Counsel Lord David Pannick, a high-profile barrister from the United Kingdom, to represent him.