Hoo boy, this one’s a doozy. Under the cover of night at 2:20am this morning, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s two siblings — Dr Lee Wei Ling and Lee Hsien Yang — launched a bombshell of a statement publicly denouncing their brother.
And we really mean it when we said bombshell. It’s nearly six whole pages of explaining how they feel deeply disturbed by the actions of Singapore’s prime minister, and how they’ve lost confidence in him — to the point that they feel threatened by his “misuse” of power in driving an alleged personal agenda. Prime Minister Lee’s wife, Ho Ching, wasn’t spared from their arrows either, as they named her as an accomplice to the alleged shenanigans
It’s a pretty lengthy, passionate press release — and a troubling one, considering the country’s most powerful individual is being slammed in public by his own family. Among the accusations lobbed at PM Lee and his wife:
- Upright leaders of “quality and integrity” in the public service are being constrained by the prime minister’s misuse of power.
- Both PM Lee and Ho Ching want to milk Lee Kuan Yew’s legacy for their own political purposes, and harbour political ambitions for their son Li Hongyi.
- Ho Ching has been ordering around people in the public service, even though she holds no elected or official position in government.
- PM Lee only pretends to espouse meritocracy, and has spoken of a “natural aristocracy”.
- PM Lee and his wife have opposed the demolishing of the Oxley Road house (even when Lee Kuan Yew was alive) and even wanted to move into the house. If they weren’t able to, the house would need to be preserved to “enhance his political capital”.
- Lee Kuan Yew was “anguished and despondent” that his own son opposed his wishes to demolish the Oxley Road house.
- PM Lee threatened and demanded his siblings to stay silent about their father’s wish to demolish the house.
- PM Lee’s lawyer sent letters making accusations and misrepresentations questioning the circumstances under which Lee Kuan Yew’s last will was executed.
- Despite numerous assertions that he would recuse himself from all government decisions involving 38 Oxley Road, PM Lee’s working behind the scenes to make sure that the house isn’t demolished.
- PM Lee is said to have every incentive to preserve the house because he wants to inherit Lee Kuan Yew’s credibility, standing and reputation.
But perhaps Wei Ling and Hsien Yang saved the biggest condemnation for last:
“The values of Lee Kuan Yew are being eroded by his own son. Our father placed our country and his people first, not his personal popularity or private agendas.
We are very sad that we have been pushed to this. We feel hugely uncomfortable and closely monitored in our own country. We do not trust Hsien Loong as a brother or as a leader. We have lost confidence in him.”
OTHER ELEMENTS IN PLAY?
Harsh. But to air out such a monumental denunciation in public — it can’t just be about a house right? There’s gotta be other elements in play to prompt such a strong response
by the siblings about the man who has all the power in the world to bury them.
When Hsien Yang’s own son — Harvard junior fellow Li Shengwu — chose to speak out as well, you know things are not going well among Singapore’s most powerful family.
PM Lee has since issued his own statement against his siblings, expressing disappointment that they’ve publicized private family matters. The allegations were denied, and their claim called absurd.
“My siblings’ statement has hurt our father’s legacy,” he said. “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.”
Whatever it is, we’re looking forward to see how the mainstream media’s going to be handling this explosive revelation. If they’re downplaying its impact and refuse to look further into the serious allegations, then we’ll know who’s pulling their strings.
In the meantime, enjoy this wee little ditty about the hullaballoo, sung in the tune of Panic! At The Disco’s I Write Sins Not Tragedies.