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GE2020: Lee Hsien Yang joins Progress Singapore Party

SINGAPORE — Mr Lee Hsien Yang, the younger brother of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, has joined the Progress Singapore Party (PSP), but the party did not say whether he will be contesting in this General Election (GE).

GE2020: Lee Hsien Yang joins Progress Singapore Party

Mr Lee Hsien Yang at a Progress Singapore Party breakfast meeting at Tiong Bahru Market on Wednesday (June 24) morning.

SINGAPORE — Mr Lee Hsien Yang, the younger brother of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, has joined the Progress Singapore Party (PSP). But the party did not say whether he will be running in this General Election (GE).

The party announced this on Wednesday (June 24) at a breakfast meeting at Tiong Bahru Market, which is within Tanjong Pagar Group Representation Constituency (GRC), a day after Parliament was dissolved and the Elections Department announced that Singapore would go to the polls on July 10.

Speaking to the media, PSP chief Tan Cheng Bock said: "This morning, I have great pleasure in giving this, our progress party membership card, to Lee Hsien Yang who has joined us quite some time ago, but because of Covid-19, we couldn’t communicate.

"But now we are able to come together and this morning, we use this occasion to hand him this very, very precious card, as I call it."

PSP chief Tan Cheng Bock (second from right) presented a party membership card to Mr Lee Hsien Yang (left). Photo: Ili Nadhirah Mansor/TODAY

When asked whether he will be running in the coming GE, Mr Lee said: "When I’m ready to disclose that, you’ll find out," adding that there are many ways he can contribute to the party.

And when pressed to elaborate, he said: “I think it’s not difficult to guess what ways there are."

He was then asked whether he will be contributing financially or if he will appear in the PSP's campaign videos.

“It’s quite possible, if you think it is a good idea, and if the people think it is a good idea," he said. "I might think about it, and you’ll hear about it quite quickly if I do.”

The PSP announced on Tuesday that Tanjong Pagar GRC is one of the eight constituencies it plans to contest in. Founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, Mr Lee's father, was a long-running Member of Parliament for the constituency.

Speculation of a burgeoning alliance between Dr Tan and Mr Lee has been rife, with the two meeting publicly on several occasions since Nov 4, 2018, when they were pictured having breakfast at a hawker centre in West Coast.

PSP had not been registered at that time. Dr Tan only announced his intention to return to politics through a Facebook post on Jan 18 last year. A few days later, Mr Lee called him the “leader Singapore deserves” in a Facebook post.

Mr Lee Hsien Yang (left) with Dr Tan Cheng Bock (right) during a Progress Singapore Party breakfast meeting at Tiong Bahru Market on Wednesday (June 24) morning. Photo: Wong Pei Ting/TODAY

They met for breakfast again on Feb 2 last year, this time at Ang Mo Kio Market and Food Centre at Block 409, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10. When approached by TODAY then, Dr Tan declined to be interviewed and Mr Lee would only say: “Breakfast was good.”

When announcing the launch of PSP in a press conference a few months later in July, Dr Tan said Mr Lee had not joined the party, but added: “If his philosophy is the same as mine, and he does not allow his personal agenda to come into my PSP, I’d be prepared to take him.”

A few days after the launch, Mr Lee said on Facebook that he supported the “principles and values” of the PSP led by Dr Tan, and that the People’s Action Party — led by his elder brother Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong — had “lost its way”. 

The latest public interaction between the PSP and Mr Lee happened last Thursday, when Mr Lee shared a Facebook post by PSP candidate-elect Bradley Bowyer less than five minutes after the latter had posted it. 

Mr Bowyer had posted a photo of him and Mr Lee from a meet-up last year, and said “my wife and I are looking forward to catching up again with Hsien Yang and his lovely wife after the circuit breaker ends tonight”.

Mr Lee and his sister Dr Lee Wei Ling have been estranged from their older brother after a disagreement over founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew’s family home at 38 Oxley Road.

Earlier this year, a disciplinary tribunal found that Mr Lee, along with his wife Lee Suet Fern, had “misled” a frail and ailing Lee Kuan Yew into signing his last will, which was prepared 15 months before his death.

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SGVotes2020 Singapore General Election General Election Progress Singapore Party Lee Hsien Yang

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