Reply by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on the Statement by Mr Lee Hsien Yang and Dr Lee Wei Ling
I am very disappointed that my siblings have chosen to issue a statement publicising private family matters. I am deeply saddened by the unfortunate allegations that they have made. Ho Ching and I deny these allegations, especially the absurd claim that I have political ambitions for my son.
While siblings may have differences, I believe that any such differences should stay in the family. Since my father’s passing in March 2015, as the eldest son I have tried my best to resolve the issues among us within the family, out of respect for our parents.
My siblings’ statement has hurt our father’s legacy.
I will do my utmost to continue to do right by my parents. At the same time, I will continue serving Singaporeans honestly and to the best of my ability. In particular that means upholding meritocracy, which is a fundamental value of our society.
As my siblings know, I am presently overseas on leave with my family. I will consider this matter further after I return this weekend.
PRIME MINISTER’S OFFICE
14 JUNE 2017
PM Lee rebuts Lee Hsien Yang: I did not deceive my father
The feuding Lee brothers are a long way from reconciliation and the family
saga is unlikely to end soon.
In his closing speech in Parliament on July 4, Prime Minister Lee Hsien
Loong rebutted — in a span of a few hours — his brother Lee Hsien Yang’s
latest allegations that “convoluted, and ultimately false” claims were
made about the wishes of their father, founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.
PM Lee denied that he deceived his father LKY over the fate of the house at
38 Oxley Road.
Responding to questions in Parliament on July 4, PM Lee made clear that his
father understood the assessment that the house would be gazetted.
“The simple answer is that I did not deceive my father.
I explained to you yesterday how my father’s primary wish on the house had
always been clear – he always wanted it knocked down. Where my siblings and
I differ is on whether my father was prepared to consider alternatives
should demolition not be possible
After his meeting with the Cabinet on 21 July 2011, Mr Lee asked me for my
view of what the Government would do with the house after he died.
I gave him my honest assessment. I told him, you have met the Cabinet and
heard the Ministers’ views. If I chaired the Cabinet meeting, this being
the view of the Ministers and the public, in all likelihood, I would have to
agree that the house be gazetted. And if I was not PM then and did not chair
Cabinet, all the more likely the house would be gazetted.
PM Lee cries during closing Parliament speech on July 4, 2017
He managed to compose himself.
Lee Kuan Yew (LKY) wrote to the cabinet three times to express his wishes on
38 Oxley Road.
The first time was after the passing of his wife Kwa Geok Choo in 2010.
After retiring from the Cabinet, he met Cabinet members for the second time
on July 20, 2011, to reiterate his wish to knock down the house.
The ministers were unanimous in expressing their opposition to knocking the
house down. PM Lee did not express a view, because he was both the son and
In August 2011, about a month after the Cabinet meeting, LKY willed 38 Oxley
Road to PM Lee as part of the share of his estate, and told the family.
PM Lee shared emails which his wife Ho Ching had sent to keep the whole
family informed of their plans and no objections were raised.
“Ho Ching and I knew my father’s wishes and also my mother’s feelings on
the house. We wanted to address their concerns should demolition not be
allowed. We came up with a proposal to renovate the house to change the
inside completely, to demolish the private spaces…
The conservation plan was done honestly and openly, not on false pretences”