For nine new Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs), their first day in Parliament yesterday began with handshakes and congratulations.
Leader of the House Ng Eng Hen and backbenchers smiled and greeted them before their swearing-in at a five-minute ceremony. Corporate lawyer Chia Yong Yong, 52, who has peroneal muscular dystrophy, was the first to be called by Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob. Ms Chia is the first wheelchair user to be in Parliament - and sits next to Deputy Speaker Charles Chong in the front row.
She was joined by other new NMPs, the oldest being Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Thomas Chua, 60, and the youngest, social entrepreneur Kuik Shiao-Yin, who is 36.
All recited the oath at the Table of the House in the centre of the Chamber.
Veteran unionist K. Karthikeyan, 55, and bank executive Ismail Hussein, 51, made their maiden speeches on the Aspire report.
The other NMPs are Board of Architects Singapore president Rita Soh, 55; sports physician Benedict Tan, 47; labour economist Randolph Tan, 50; and veteran historian Tan Tai Yong, 51.
The NMP scheme was introduced in 1990 to provide more alternative voices in Parliament.
This article was first published on September 09, 2014.
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