The Nominated Member of Parliament Scheme: Are Unelected Voices Still Necessary in Parliament? — A Collection of Perspectives and Personal Reflections by NMPs
- About the Author
10 September 1990 marked a significant milestone in Singapore's political history with the introduction of the Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP) scheme. More than 90 NMPs have since served in Parliament to date, with the scheme being made a permanent feature in July 2010, but the political relevance and contributions of this uniquely Singaporean innovation are still up for debate three decades on.
Was its 'birth' justified in 1990? Have NMPs achieved the intent of raising alternative and dissenting views that elected MPs — on both sides of the bench — could not/did not? Has the presence of these nominated members kept voters away from the Opposition, notwithstanding the largest ever number of opposition seats won in the general elections of 2020?
Inspired by her parliamentary experience, former NMP Anthea Ong brings together 20 NMPs past and present as the Editor of this first book dedicated to the NMP scheme. This is an NMP story told by this special group of Singaporeans who have served as appointed members in the hallowed chamber across 32 years, through their personal lenses as their stories. In this collection of essays, with at least one NMP from each of the eight Parliaments, we get to hear directly from them and not through the filters of the media nor the distanced analyses of political scientists and commentators.
This book aims to capture the significance of the NMP scheme and its place in Singapore's parliamentary evolution, which its contributors hope will invite a wider discourse amongst Singaporeans on how NMPs should and must represent them, aside from their elected representatives. And in so doing, ask what is the Parliament that Singaporeans deserve as an evolving society.
Anthea Indira Ong Lay Theng; born 1968 is a former Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP) for the 13th Parliament of Singapore. Ong is also a full-time entrepreneur and social advocate, and founder of social organisations including Hush TeaBar and A Good Space.
Cover Type: Hardback
Size: 150mm x 230mm