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Same actors, different script

Every nomination day independents Ooi Boon Ewe and Zeng Guoyan would try and fail to get nominated. -ST
Tessa Wong

Mon, Jan 21, 2013
The Straits Times

SINGAPORE - WHILE elections can often be unpredictable affairs, one thing is almost guaranteed to happen on Nomination Day: independents Ooi Boon Ewe and Zeng Guoyan would try and fail to get nominated.

The two men were a fixture in the past three elections, each time showing up, creating a fuss, and then offering some new reason they did not get through the process.

Their presence, however, does add colour to what is otherwise a serious day. Mr Zeng, who in previous elections wore baju kurung, this time took his sartorial cues from the Middle East.

Donning a red and white keffiyeh, a type of Arabian headdress, he puzzled reporters by leisurely riding his motorcycle three times around North Vista Secondary School before entering the gates.

He later emerged wearing a banner over his body which carried a complaint about his treatment in a 1997 conviction for molestation.

When asked earlier why he wanted to contest, he said: ''If you have $14,500 (the election deposit), you can contest. It's better than going to the casino, isn't it?''

Mr Ooi took a rather different route to failing to contest. He arrived at the centre alone and was seen leaving in a hurry to search for ''his driver''.

He said he lost his political donations certificate and nomination form. For the second election in a row, he was also missing assentors and was seen looking for volunteers in the supporters field.

Asked later why he wanted to contest repeatedly, Mr Ooi claimed he had been in university at the same time as some Cabinet ministers.

''All your contemporaries are leaders of the country and you can't even be an MP? Come on!'' he said.

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