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President Halimah Yacob spent more than S$220,000 on election campaign

SINGAPORE: President Halimah Yacob spent a total of S$220,875 on her campaign, according to documents made available on Saturday (Oct 7) by the Elections Department.

The bulk of the money, S$198,154, went to the advertising and printing of promotional materials. Her biggest investment in the campaign was 20,110 posters that cost close to S$73,000, which included the cost of incinerating posters and banners.

The 200 PVC banners used in the campaign alone amounted to over S$20,000.

Another 1.28 million pieces of Admail A5 cards cost S$34,000, excluding GST, while the making of a profile video that took six days to film came up to S$29,000.

She received seven single donations of S$10,000 or more, totaling S$800,000.

Businessman Ng Kim Choon was her biggest donor, contributing S$440,000. Others who donated include Sheng Siong owner Lim Hock Chee and Singapore Salvage Engineers, a firm that is involved in marine salvage repairs and diving operations. They each donated S$50,000.

Under the Presidential Elections Act, the principal election agents of candidates who contest in an election must submit a declaration and a return of election expenses to the Returning Officer within 31 days after the day on which the result of the election is published in the Gazette.

These returns are required to ensure accountability and transparency in the candidates’ campaign finance.

Madam Halimah, who was declared the only candidate in the Presidential Election this year, submitted the statement of her campaign expenses to the Elections Department on Oct 3.

According to the documents, called the returns of election expenses, election agents, polling agents and counting agents did not receive any remuneration. No amount was recorded under Mdm Halimah’s personal expenses.

Mdm Halimah and her team appeared to have a couple of favourites when it came to food, with a breakfast order from Delifrance on Sep 13 – Nomination Day – and a buffet dinner the day before at Islamic Restaurant which came up to about S$2,000 for 45 people.

A room at the National Trades Union Congress on 1 Marina Boulevard cost Mdm Halimah almost S$9,000 over several days in August and September. The cost included the rental of a Fuji Xerox copier, car park coupons and the installation of printer drivers, telephone sets and a fax line.

She received seven single donations of S$10,000 or more totaling S$800,000.

A spokesman for her election campaign said that all unused donations raised will be returned to the donors.

The donors have indicated that they intend to make a contribution to the next cycle of the President’s Challenge, he said.

“Madam Halimah Yacob is grateful to all Singaporeans for their support and encouragement during the recent Presidential Election,” the spokesman added,

The public can inspect the documents from Saturday at a fee of S$2. The documents will be available for viewing for six months.

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