Tribute Speech for Mr Seah Kian Peng on his election as the 11th Speaker of Parliament
Tribute Speech for Mr Seah Kian Peng on his election as the 11th Speaker of Parliament by Minister Indranee Rajah, Leader of the House, on 2 August 2023.
Mr Speaker, Sir, on behalf of the House, may I extend warm congratulations to you on your election as the eleventh Speaker of Parliament.
Sir, you bring a wealth of experience to the Chair. You have served as a Member of Parliament for Marine Parade GRC since 2006, and since that time you have given voice to the aspirations and concerns of your residents and Singaporeans in this House. As a Labour MP, you have been a strong advocate for the Labour Movement. You have made many contributions in Parliament over the last 16 years, including:
Twice successfully moving a Private Member’s Bill to amend the Maintenance of Parents Act, the first time in 2010 and the second, just last month at the July Sitting. Both times, you led the review workgroup, and consulted extensively with members of the public and various stakeholders.
Serving as Chairperson of two Government Parliamentary Committees (GPC), first for Community, Youth and Sports, and second, more recently, for Social and Family Development, though that ends today with your election as Speaker.
You have also served in various Committees of Parliament, including as Chair of the Estimates Committee, and as a member of the Committee of Privileges and the Standing Orders Committee.
More importantly, Sir, you are no stranger to the Speaker’s Chair, having previously served as Deputy Speaker from 2011 to 2016. This is especially pertinent because you are taking the Chair at a time when, having regard to recent events and the circumstances in which the Speaker’s seat became vacant, it is imperative to ensure that MPs and Singaporeans alike can continue to have trust and confidence in the office of the Speaker, and be assured that the duties and functions of the Speaker will be carried out firmly, fairly and impartially.
In this, I am encouraged by your response to the media at the time your nomination was announced, when you said that your intention was to know your role well and discharge your duties responsibly and fairly.
I understand that for now you will continue to work at NTUC Enterprise while serving as Speaker. However, I also understand that you are making plans to step down from your current job at NTUC Enterprise which is expected to be within this year. In the meantime, you will be making the necessary adjustments, to enable you to carry out your duties as Speaker properly and fully.
With the Speaker’s seat filled, we can once again focus our attention on the pressing issues that are at the top of people’s minds, and push ahead with the Government’s agenda for the remainder of this term of Parliament.
Sir, before I conclude, may I also take this opportunity to welcome the new cohort of Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs) to this House. Among them is Mr Raj Joshua Thomas, who is, of course, already known to us. This will be his second term as an NMP. The eight new NMPs are:
a. Ms Usha Chandradas
b. Mr Keith Chua
c. Mr Mark Lee
d. Mr Ong Hua Han
e. Mr Neil Parekh Nimil Rajnikant
f. Assoc Prof Razwana Begum Abdul Rahim
g. Ms See Jinli Jean
h. Dr Syed Harun Alhabsyi
To our NMPs, a warm welcome and we look forward to your participation in Parliament.
Mr Speaker Sir, congratulations once again on your election and our best wishes as you take up the chairmanship of proceedings in this House.
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