Singapore names first woman president amid controversy

Former speaker of Singapore's parliament, Halimah Yacob, arrives with her husband Mohammed Abdullah Alhabshee to submit her presidential nomination papers at the nomination centre in Singapore on Wednesday. (Reuters photo)

SINGAPORE: Singapore named a former speaker of parliament as the multicultural city-state's first woman president on Wednesday while critics expressed dismay that other candidates were disqualified and the election went uncontested.

Aiming to strengthen a sense of inclusivity, Singapore had decreed the presidency, a largely ceremonial six-year post, would be reserved for candidates from the minority Malay community this time.

The returning officer declared Halimah Yacob, 63, elected on Wednesday after nominations closed.

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