Heng chooses Chan to be deputy as the rest have chosen both to lead

In an interview with Singapore media on Saturday (1 Dec) after the end of the G-20 summit, Minister Heng Swee Keat, 57, who has been chosen to lead the 4G PAP leadership, revealed how he came to choose Chan Chun Sing, 49, to be his deputy.

Heng earlier announced that he had asked Chan to be his deputy.

He shared with the media details of how his 4G colleagues deliberated on who would lead them.

He said the younger leaders had been consulting one another and, after a period of time, they decided among themselves that both he and Chan were possible candidates.

Heng said that he was not involved in their discussions as to which of their final two candidates they would choose as leader.

He said, “It took them several months and I told them: Please discuss it thoroughly so that you can get as wide a range of views as possible.”

After his colleagues informed him of their choice, Heng said he had a “very nice discussion with Chun Sing”. Heng said he then asked Chan to be his deputy.

“And he readily accepted, so I am very happy with that,” he added.

“I want to ensure that we maintain that unity in the team and that’s why I had such a good discussion with Chun Sing, not just on being the leader and deputy, but also on what we need to do to take Singapore forward,” Mr Heng said.

“We are both very clear that it is not about lobbying younger office-holders for a particular position, but about reaching agreements on how we can do this well and the agenda for taking Singapore forward,” he added.