PM Lee apologises for 'private dispute' that has affected Singapore
Jun 21 2017
But he noted that his siblings have decided to make serious allegations publicly, including the claim that he used his position as Prime Minister to influence a ministerial committee chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean to weigh the various options for the family home.
Lee Hsien Loong took over as prime minister from Lew Kuan Yew's successor Goh Chok Tong in 2004.
"I deeply regret that this dispute has affected Singapore's reputation and Singaporeans' confidence in the government", the leader said in the televised message Monday evening as he returned to duty after vacationing overseas.
They know that I would personally not support the options at either end of the range: "At one end, preserving the house as it is for visitors to enter and see would be totally against the wishes of Mr and Mrs Lee Kuan Yew; and at the other, demolishing the house and putting the property on the market for new private residences".
Their grievance, he says, lies in what they say is PM Lee "flip-flopping" in his stance on their father's wish to demolish the house. After unsuccessfully trying to transfer the property to his sister, the house was then sold to his brother and the proceeds were donated to charity, the PM continued.
A cabinet committee is considering what should happen to the property, but Lee says he is not involved in any of the decisions.
He said he would also refute the allegations in Parliament on July 3, adding that he has instructed the ruling People's Action Party whip to be lifted - allowing members of parliament to ask questions and not be bound by the party position. "I hope that this full, public airing in Parliament will dispel any doubts that have been planted and strengthen confidence in our institutions and our system of government". He served as the country's leader from 1959 to 1990 and died in 2015.
Hsien Yang denies his brother Singapore prime minister Hsien Loong's comment that siblings not happy the family's Oxley Road house was left to him.
Mr Lee Kuan Yew, who turned Singapore from a backwater at the tip of the Malaysian peninsula into a financial and technology powerhouse, often sued critics for suggesting nepotism in his government. Ahead of the questions, he is expected to deliver a ministerial statement to refute the "baseless" accusations made by his siblings.
"These allegations go beyond private and personal matters, and extend to the conduct of my office and the integrity of the Government", he said.
"Much as I would like to move on, and end a most unhappy experience for Singaporeans, these baseless accusations against the government can not be left unanswered", he said.
Writing on Facebook, Mr Lee said he and his sister, Dr Lee Wei Ling, had met with Mr Teo "on numerous occasions", but they were apart from and well before the formation of the committee.
The next day, PM Lee released a 41-point document, which detailed the events that caused him to have serious concerns over how the last will of the late Mr Lee was made.