February 05, (THEWILL) – The Singapore government has announced it will review the terms of its contract with Formula One to host the Singapore Grand Prix, following corruption charges against former Transport Minister, S. Iswaran. Iswaran resigned in January after being accused of 27 offences, most relating to corruption. The charges have also implicated billionaire hotelier Ong Beng Seng, credited with originally bringing the F1 night race to Singapore in 2008.
Minister Grace Fu told parliament the government is auditing the 2022 race and reviewing the broader F1 deal “given the allegations of corruption”. She stated there is currently no evidence the F1 or other contracts were structured in a way that disadvantaged the government. The F1 deal was signed by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and Ong’s Singapore GP company. It has been renewed multiple times, with the current term lasting until 2028.
Despite the review, Minister Fu reaffirmed Singapore’s commitment to continuing the Formula One race, noting preparations have already begun for the 2024 edition. She stated that while all government deals will be assessed to protect Singapore’s interests, the country remains dedicated to hosting the Grand Prix.
Iswaran has pleaded not guilty to the corruption charges against him. He is accused of accepting tickets to high-profile sporting and entertainment events from Ong. The case has shocked Singapore, which is regarded as one of the least corrupt countries globally.
The investigation into top-level graft has captivated the city-state financial hub. With Singapore taking integrity and good governance seriously, the outcome of the review into the F1 deal will be closely watched.
About the Author
Jude Obafemi is a versatile senior Correspondent at THEWILL Newspapers, excelling in sourcing, researching, and delivering sports news stories for both print and digital publications.