Farid Khan Kaim Khan, chairman of Bourbon Offshore Asia Pacific, is hoping to be elected as Singapore's next president.
The 62-year-old announced his candidacy on Tuesday saying that he is very concerned with the growing threat of radicalism.
"If elected, I will work closely with the government and various organizations to resolve the issue," he said, adding that he would like to strengthen trust among Singaporeans regardless of race or religion. "Let us enhance our efforts in helping the needy, including troubled youths, to strengthen our social fabric," he said.
Farid is married with two children and has been working at Singapore-based Bourbon Offshore Asia Pacific for more than 10 years.
Farid's father died when he was 13, after which he left school to work at a timber processing factory. His older brother passed away at a young age, and Farid took on a second job washing cars at a petrol station at night to help his mother and eight remaining siblings.
Two years later he took up an opportunity as a marine engineer. He worked at a shipyard for several years and sailed with a local company for 14 months. He then enrolled himself into the marine engineering course at Singapore Polytechnic. He progressed rapidly through the ranks at various companies, including Neptune Orient Lines, to reach his current position with Bourbon.
Farid said that his career experience – which includes dealing with people and making high-level decisions – makes him a good candidate for president.
The election is scheduled for September. Second Chance Properties CEO Mohamed Salleh Marican, 67, is also in the running, and Speaker of Parliament Halimah Yacob may also stand. Changes to the system mean the presidency is reserved for candidates with Malay background, a move designed to ensure minority representation.
“I am of Pakistani descent and my wife is of Arabic descent. Yet, our family and relatives do speak Malay and practice the Malay culture. So I am part of the Malay community,” Farid said.