Dispute with PM Lee Hsien Loong not ‘merely a family affair’: Lee Wei Ling

The house at Oxley Road in Singapore (Photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

A day after Lee Wei Ling and Lee Hsien Yang released a six-page statement saying they have ‘no confidence’ in their brother, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Wei Ling has posted another statement on Facebook saying that their dispute is not just a family matter.

“The most important point I want to put across is if PM can misuse his official power to abuse his siblings who can fight back, what else can he do to ordinary citizens,” she wrote while on holiday in Scotland on Thursday (15 June). She added that the letter she posted online had been vetted by her lawyers and that her lawyer “edited that main message out”.

Referring to the Oxley Road house, she said, “My Father had told us, his children, repeatedly, that being family property, there is no need to donate to charity if Oxley were sold.”

PM Lee had issued a joint statement in December 2015 with his siblings saying, “To honour the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, Mr Lee Hsien Loong and Mr Lee Hsien Yang have each agreed to donate half the value of 38 Oxley Road to the charities named in the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s obituary notice.”

In a separate Facebook post, Wei Ling referred to a media report about the Cabinet Secretary saying that PM Lee was not involved in the ministerial committee set up to consider options for the Oxley Road house. She said, “Private family matters don’t involve setting up secret committees of ministers to get your way. There is no way that this committee was set up without LHL’s tacit consent and approval.”

On Wednesday evening, Hsien Yang told Yahoo Singapore by phone that it was the prime minister’s change in his position on the status of the late Lee Kuan Yew’s house that ultimately led to his siblings to issue a public statement of no confidence in him. Hsien Yang said it was “painful” and “difficult” to issue the statement.

He also said that he and his wife planned to leave Singapore “for the foreseeable future” because they felt threatened and that “organs of the state” would be used against them.

The Prime Minister, who is currently overseas on leave, said on Wednesday that he is “deeply saddened by the unfortunate allegations”, and that he will consider the matter further upon his return this weekend.

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