Singapore Prime Minister Promotes Likely Successor To Deputy

Singapore — Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has promoted his finance minister to deputy as a part of a succession plan, however the timing of the handover is unclear.

His workplace stated on Tuesday that 49-year-old Lawrence Wong would grow to be deputy prime minister as a part of a cupboard reshuffle on June 13. Wong, who will retain his finance division, would be the caretaker prime minister in Lee’s absence, it stated.

“The management of the following era is taking form. I ask everybody to increase their full assist to this vital transition, in order that Singapore might be safely pulled out of the pandemic and headed for a brighter future,” Lee stated on Fb.

Lee, 70, has stated Wong will take over the reins earlier than or after the overall elections in 2025. Lee’s Individuals’s Motion Celebration, one of many world’s longest-serving events, noticed its worst electoral efficiency in 2020. Though it retained its tremendous majority, it misplaced some seats and slipped assist.

The PAP has dominated politics since 1959, when Lee’s father, Lee Kuan Yew, turned Singapore’s first prime minister and made the resource-poor city-state one of many world’s richest international locations throughout a 31-year tenure. However it has additionally been criticized for its use of tighter authorities controls, media censorship and repressive legal guidelines, and civil lawsuits towards dissidents.

The 2020 election consequence prompted then-Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat to withdraw his nomination, who was tipped to succeed Lee. Wong took over as finance minister in Could 2021 and was elected by the PAP in April as a attainable new successor to Lee.

Wong, who got here to prominence for serving to coordinate Singapore’s combat towards COVID-19, would be the city-state’s fourth chief since independence in 1965.

He was a civil servant who has served in a number of ministries and served as Lee’s principal personal secretary from 2005–2008 and CEO of the Power Market Authority from 2008–2011. He entered politics solely within the 2011 common elections.

Wong has stated that turning into Singapore’s subsequent chief will likely be “the most important accountability of my life.”

“I’ll do my greatest and take a look at my greatest to serve Singapore and the folks of Singapore,” he wrote on Fb.

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