Singapore’s electoral registers being prepared; Pedra Branca added to East Coast electoral division

A government gazette released the same day also stated that the East Coast electoral division has on February 1, 2019 been altered to include the island of Pedra Branca. — TODAY file pic
A government gazette released the same day also stated that the East Coast electoral division has on February 1, 2019 been altered to include the island of Pedra Branca. — TODAY file pic

SINGAPORE — The registers of electors are being prepared, and will be opened for public inspection in the second half of February, said the Elections Department (ELD) today.

A government gazette released the same day also stated that the East Coast electoral division has today been altered to include the island of Pedra Branca.

Singapore citizens who are at least 21 years old as of February 1, and who are not disqualified as an elector under any law, will be included in the registers. They must also have a local residential address on their NRICs as of February 1, or if residing overseas, have an address here registered with the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority for voting purposes, said the ELD.

Meanwhile, the inclusion of Pedra Branca under the East Coast electoral division was made by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong under section 8 of the Parliamentary Elections Act.

It is not unusual to include an island in an electoral map. Prior to the changes, the East Coast electoral division already covered the islands of Pulau Serangoon — better known as Coney Island — Pulau Ketam, Pulau Ubin, Pulau Sekudu, Pulau Tekong Kechil and Pulau Tekong.

For years, Pedra Branca has been a contentious issue between Singapore and Malaysia, with both parties claiming that the island is part of their respective territories. Both countries decided to settle the issue at the International Court of Justice, which ruled in 2008 that the island belonged to Singapore.

In February 2017, Malaysia filed a fresh application contesting that rule, but decided to drop that challenge last May. — TODAY

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