COMMON TERMS

  • Ballot Box

    The sealed container to deposit marked ballot papers.

  • Ballot Paper

    The printed paper for voters to mark their choice. It lists the names of candidates standing for the election, their symbols and photographs.

  • By-election

    An election held in a Single Member Constituency to fill the vacancy caused by the departure of the sitting Member of Parliament (MP) before that MP’s term expires. In the case of a Group Representation Constituency, a by-election cannot be held unless all the MPs for that electoral division (also known as constituency) have vacated their seats.

  • Candidate

    The person standing for the Parliamentary election of an electoral division or the Presidential election.

  • Claim

    A claim is put up when a person wishes to:
    - Have his name included in one of the registers of electors (if he thinks he is a qualified elector but his name is not found in any of the revised registers);
    - Update his name or residential address (if he has changed his residential address before the cut-off date of the revised set of registers) in the revised register; or
    - Move his name from the revised register of an electoral division to another (if he has changed his residential address before the cut-off date of the revised set of registers).

    A claim may be raised only during the 2-week period when the revised registers of electors are open for public inspection.

  • Claimant List

    The list of valid claims by persons whose names will be entered into the revised register of electors of the electoral division that the claimant list relates to.

  • Contested Election

    An election held when more than one candidate or one group of candidates (in the case of a Group Representation Constituency) have been successfully nominated. A poll must be conducted to elect the candidates for that office.

  • Constituency

    Also called an electoral division, it is an area of Singapore for which a Member of Parliament (MP) is elected to Parliament to represent the residents of the area.

    A constituency which is declared to be a Group Representation Constituency is one for which a group comprising three to six MPs is required to be elected to represent the residents of the area.

  • Date of Issue (DOI)

    The date of issue of NRIC.

  • Election

    There are 2 kinds of elections in Singapore - Parliamentary election and Presidential election.

    In a Parliamentary election, qualified electors vote for their choice of candidate or group of candidates for political office. The candidate or group of candidates with the most number of votes is elected and becomes a Member or Members of Parliament.

    In a Presidential election, the candidate with the most number of votes is elected and becomes the President of the Republic of Singapore.

  • Electoral Division

    Also called a constituency, it is an area of Singapore for which a Member of Parliament (MP) is elected to Parliament to represent the residents of the area.

    An electoral division which is declared to be a Group Representation Constituency is one for which a group comprising three to six MPs is required to be elected to represent the residents of the area.

  • General Election

    An election held simultaneously in every electoral division (also known as a constituency) to fill the seats of Members of Parliament, following the dissolution of Parliament or expiry of Parliament’s term.

  • Group Representation Constituency

    A Group Representation Constituency (GRC) is one where groups of candidates from the same political party, or comprising all independents, contest in a Parliamentary election. The number of candidates in each group is three to six, depending on the declared number of Members of Parliament (MPs) to be returned from that GRC. Each GRC is also designated as one for which at least one of the MPs to be returned must be a person belonging to the Malay community, or a person belonging to the Indian or other minority communities.

  • Independent

    A candidate or an elected Member of Parliament who is not affiliated to any political party.

  • Inspection of Revised Registers of Electors

    A 2-week period when the revised registers of electors are open for members of the public to check. Claims and objections may be raised during this period.

  • Nomination

    The process by which a person must successfully undergo on Nomination Day to become a candidate at an election.

  • Nomination Day

    The day that prospective candidates in an election file their nomination papers with the Returning Officer.

  • Non-voter

    A qualified elector who failed to vote at an election. Non-voters must apply to restore their names to the registers of electors so that they can vote at future elections.

  • Objection

    An objection is raised when a person:
    - Objects to his own name in the register of electors; or
    - Objects to the inclusion of the name of any other person in the register of electors.

    A person is allowed to make an objection only if his name is in the register of electors of the same electoral division as the person he wants to object to. He is not allowed to object to a name appearing in the register of electors of another electoral division.

    An objection may be raised only during the 2-week period when the revised registers of electors are open for public inspection.

  • Overseas Elector

    A Singapore citizen residing overseas who satisfies the qualifying criteria and has successfully registered as an overseas elector. He can cast his vote at the overseas polling station allotted to him, or at his allotted local polling station if he is back in Singapore on Polling Day.

  • Parliamentary Election

    An election held to elect a Member of Parliament (MP) or a group of MPs (in the case of a Group Representation Constituency) for an electoral division (also known as a constituency). It may take the form of a general election or a by-election.

  • Poll Card

    The card a qualified elector receives from Elections Department confirming that his name is on a register of electors. It provides information on the polling station to vote at.

  • Polling Day

    The day that electors cast their votes at an election. Polling day at a general election or Presidential election is a public holiday.

  • Polling District

    A subdivision of an electoral division demarcated by the Registration Officer to facilitate smooth management of polling proceedings in an election. Based on the NRIC addresses as of the cut-off date of the register of electors for that electoral division, every elector will be assigned a polling district and will vote at the polling station for that polling district.

  • Polling Place

    A part of the polling station where there is a set-up with a registration table, polling booth and ballot box for voters to cast their votes. There are usually two to four polling places in a polling station.

  • Polling Station

    The place where voters go to cast their votes on Polling Day. In Singapore, it is usually situated at a school, a void deck/precinct pavilion in a public housing estate or a community centre/club. Overseas polling stations are situated in designated Singapore High Commissions, Embassies or Consulates.

  • Prescribed Date

    The date prescribed by the Prime Minister for the purpose of determining a person’s eligibility and electoral division (based on his residential address) for the purpose of compiling the registers of electors.

  • Presidential Election

    A nation-wide election for the office of the President of the Republic of Singapore.

  • Presiding Officer

    An election official who conducts and assists with polling proceedings at the polling station.

  • Qualified Elector

    A person who meets the criteria to be eligible to vote at Parliamentary and Presidential elections. His name is included (based on his Singapore residential address in his NRIC or Local Contact Address registered with the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority) in the register of electors of the electoral division where he should vote.

  • Register of Electors

    The list of all qualified electors belonging to that electoral division (also known as a constituency) for the purpose of elections. There is one register for each electoral division.

  • Registration Officer

    The public officer who has been appointed by the Prime Minister under section 3 of the Parliamentary Elections Act for the purpose of registration of electors.

  • Returning Officer

    The public officer who has been appointed by the Prime Minister under section 3 of the Parliamentary Elections Act to oversee the impartial and smooth conduct of elections.

  • Revision of Registers of Electors

    An exercise to update the registers of electors, involving the addition of names, correction of personal particulars, and removal of names, to determine the list of electors who have the right to vote at Parliamentary and Presidential elections. All qualified electors are assigned electoral divisions based on their Singapore residential address in their NRICs or Local Contact Address registered with the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority, as of the cut-off date of the revised registers.

  • Single Member Constituency

    A Single Member Constituency is one that will return a single Member of Parliament in an election.

  • Uncontested Election

    This happens when only one candidate or one group of candidates (in the case of a Group Representation Constituency) has been successfully nominated. No poll will be conducted in such a case and the candidate or group of candidates nominated will be declared duly elected.

  • Writ of Election

    A public document issued by the President for Parliamentary elections or the Prime Minister for Presidential elections to mark the start of an election. It directs the Returning Officer to hold the election.

Last updated: 24 May 2017