PM Lee using Parliament session to 'cover-up and whitewash' himself: Hsien Yang

Nicholas Yong
Senior Correspondent
Lee Hsien Yang, son of former leader Lee Kuan Yew, delivers his eulogy during the funeral service for his father at the University Cultural Centre at the National University of Singapore March 29, 2015. (Reuters file photo)

A parliamentary session is not the correct forum for Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to answer the accusations that have been brought against him by his siblings, said his brother Hsien Yang.

In his latest Facebook post on Thursday (28 June), Hsien Yang insisted that there is “no promise of truthfulness due to parliamentary privilege” and claimed that it could be an opportunity “to continue to mislead or insinuate under this privilege”.

“We have serious concerns with Lee Hsien Loong’s attempt to cover-up and whitewash himself in Parliament on 3 July 2017… We believe that key issues such as his abuse of power will be simply swept under the carpet. The accused controls both process and outcome in this forum,” he said in the post.

The youngest child of the late Lee Kuan Yew did not elaborate on what might be a more appropriate forum for the prime minister to answer to the allegations.

This was the latest development in the Lee family feud that has gripped Singapore since 14 June, when Hsien Yang and his sister Wei Ling issued a statement denouncing their older brother and accusing him of pursuing a personal agenda with regard to their former family home at 38 Oxley Road.

PM Lee has denied their “baseless allegations” and pledged to make a Ministerial Statement to refute their charges at the next sitting of Parliament on 3 July. He has instructed that the party whip be lifted for the session.

More accusations to come?

But Hsien Yang charged in his latest post that Parliament is “a forum that again places Hsien Loong before his subordinates”, who lack both “sufficient background and evidence of the numerous instances of abuse and conflicts of interest, many yet to be raised”.

“Even before the session, many of them appear to have felt obliged to give him cover. Many MPs will fear career repercussions if they speak out against their superior. Historically, few PAP MPs have dared to dissent even when the party whip was lifted,” he wrote.

Hsien Yang also claimed that there would be neither “opportunity nor adequate time for evidence to be properly drawn together, placed before Parliament, and considered”, nor will there be any opportunity for an examining body to “properly probe explanations or excuses”.

“We have no confidence that a fair, transparent or complete account of events will be told: only his side of the story will air,” he said.

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