Tan Cheng Bock confirms he will contest in 2017 presidential election

Tan had narrowly lost the last presidential election in 2011.

Former People's Action Party (PAP) MP Dr Tan Cheng Bock has confirmed he will contest in the 2017 presidential election.

"The election is 17 months away, but I feel that it is time to state my decision. So I now state that I intend and will contest the coming Presidential Election," Tan said in a press conference on Friday, acceding to TODAY.

Tan, a former presidential candidate, had earlier said in a Facebook Post he might run for president again, hinting there is pressure from followers to run in 2017.

"Many of my friends and supporters have asked if l intend to contest in the forthcoming Presidential Election in 2017," Dr Tan said in a Facebook post on Wednesday, adding, "I owe them an answer."

Tan's announcement comes after Singapore formed a high-profile constitutional commission to review the elected presidency system.

Primarily two aspects of the presidency and the presidential election process will be under the review by the commission -- the powers of the president and the elaborate and strict eligibility norms for contesting the election.

Tan had narrowly lost the last presidential election. He garnered 32.5 percent of the votes, losing to president Tony Tan Keng Yam by just 7,382 votes.

In another Facebook post, Tan urged Singaporeans to participate in the review process to "ensure that we have a Elected Presidency system that will enable us to elect a truly independent and effective president".

In Singapore, the president is directly elected by simple majority popular vote for a single 6-year term. The president is the head of state while the prime minister is the head of the government.

However, the president has significant powers in three areas -- protection of the state's reserves, appointment of key personnel including the chief justice and armed forces chief, and third, the use of internal security act.

The election system stipulates that all candidates should get the certificates of eligibility issued by the Presidential Elections Committee.

The constitutional commission will review how these powers function and if changes to existing provisions are needed.