To commemorate the end of the year of the Monkey, Blackbox Research took to the streets, asking Singaporeans who they would crown the news personality of 2016. 1,000 Singaporean respondents then placed their top three picks from a list of 17 news-makers.
Having snatched Singapore’s first ever Olympic gold medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, it comes as little surprise that 68% of Singaporeans crowned Joseph Schooling as Singapore’s 2016 news personality of the year. Aged just 21, Schooling rose to national fame as beat out his opponents – including personal idol, Michael Phelps – to a record 50.39 second win in the 100m butterfly.
Singapore’s third Prime Minister, Lee Hsien Loong, came in second place with 58%. Already in his third term as Prime Minster, Lee continues to enjoy high popularity, and Blackbox’s findings validate this. Last year often saw Lee in the spotlight for a number of reasons: under his leadership, the Committee for the Future Economy (CFE) was launched, the bilateral agreement for a high-speed train between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore was signed, and his Government rolled out Skillsfuture. The nation was also momentarily rattled by a brief health-scare during his National Day Rally speech, and the media pondered the question of his potential future succession.
Late President S.R. Nathan took third place with 36%. The findings further highlight the nations reverence and affection for him, his place in the Nation’s heart clearly visible at the time of his passing. Showing further interest in Singapore’s political and sporting spheres, Deputy Prime Minister, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, took fourth place with 28%, whilst two-time gold medal Paralympian, Yip Pin Xiu, took fifth place with 26%. Trailing behind in sixth place was controversial video blogger and enfant terrible, Amos Yee at 14%. Yee is currently being held in detention in McHenry Country Adult Correctional Facility in Illinois, awaiting a court hearing on March 7th for political asylum in the United States of America.
A full review of 2016 will be released next week by Blackbox Research, detailing which areas the Government performed best and worst in over 2016, as well as taking a look at Singaporeans’ top priorities for 2017. Stay tuned for more information!