Ho Ching had 'no business' acting on PMO's behalf in collection of LKY's papers: Hsien Yang

Lee Hsien Loong’s wife Ho Ching, and her brother-in-law Lee Hsien Yang. (PHOTO: Reuters/AFP)
Lee Hsien Loong’s wife Ho Ching, and her brother-in-law Lee Hsien Yang. (PHOTO: Reuters/AFP)

UPDATE (at 12.30am, 23 June 2017): The National Heritage Board (NHB) said on Thursday (22 June) that, due to a “clerical error”, the wrong dates were recorded in the list cited by Lee Hsien Yang, which states when the items belonging to Lee Kuan Yew were handed over by the Prime Minister’s Office to the NHB. Instead of 6 February 2015 as Hsien Yang mentioned, the actual date on which items 2 to 5 on the list were handed over to the NHB was 6 April 2015, according to a Channel NewsAsia report. This occurred following the death of Lee Kuan Yew and the items were loaned to NHB for display in the “In Memoriam: Lee Kuan Yew” exhibition that was subsequently held.

UPDATE: Lee Hsien Yang updated his Facebook post at around 8.30pm with the following: “CNA has kindly pointed out to us that Ho Ching may have been on an official trip on 6 Feb. In that case, since this official NHB document lists Ho Ching as the PMO point of contact, can she please identify the subordinate she instructed to take our father’s belongings?”

Lee Hsien Yang has questioned why Singapore leader Lee Hsien Loong’s wife, Ho Ching, had acted “under the auspices” of the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) in collecting papers belonging to the late Lee Kuan Yew despite not holding an official PMO post.

In a Facebook post on Thursday (22 June), Hsien Yang – the younger brother of the prime minister – noted that their father Lee Kuan Yew had been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit on 5 February 2015.

“The next day, Ho Ching helped herself to a number of LKY’s papers. These she handed to the NHB (ostensibly on loan) under the auspices of the Prime Minister’s Office,” said Lee Hsien Yang, referring to the National Heritage Board (NHB).

“She had no business doing this when LKY was in ICU and it is deeply troubling that someone can represent the PMO despite holding no official position,” he added. Ho is the chief executive officer of the state-owned Temasek Holdings.

Hsien Yang’s post included a screenshot of a list of his father’s personal items, including a telegram sent by the late Lee and a Red Ministerial Box. In each instance, the lender/source was cited as the PMO, with Ho as the point of contact. Under the “Remarks” column of the same document, various people are listed as having collected the individual items.

The children of former prime minister Lee Kuan Yew have been embroiled in a public spat over the fate of their father’s Oxley Road house. PM Lee’s younger siblings have accused him of abusing his power in trying to prevent the house from being demolished, as per the late Lee’s final will.

PM Lee apologised to Singaporeans on Monday (19 June) for the family feud that has “disturbed and confused” Singaporeans and said he would be making a Ministerial Statement in Parliament on 3 July to refute the allegations against him.

Yahoo Singapore has reached out to the PMO for comment.

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