Ho Ching (image - Wikipedia)

PM Lee’s wife comments on maritime dispute while rest of SG and MY politicians’ spouse keep quiet

It was reported that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s wife, Ho Ching, shared a TODAYONLINE article on Facebook detailing the strong comments made by Malaysian Politician Dr Rais Hussin towards Singapore on the current maritime dispute.

While sharing the article, she commented on it publicly with the caption, “Chill, man”.

Dr Rais is a supreme council member of PM Mahathir’s party, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PBBM). In his comments, he reprimanded Singapore for its stance on the maritime dispute, telling Singapore that it will gain nothing by hardening its stance against its neighbour.

Basically, Dr Rais suggested that Singapore loosens up instead of taking a hard approach to the issue. He said, “There is nothing to gain by issuing threats to interdict Malaysian ships in Malaysian or Singaporean waters. What they will get is only pain by a thousand cuts.”

However, Dr Rais did not seem to support further escalation of the maritime dispute between the 2 countries. He said, “Everyone knows that wars are meant to make orphans of children.”

While it’s true that Dr Rais’ comments were quite sharp and a little hostile, it is quite surprising to see PM Lee’s wife telling the Malaysian politician to “chill” when so far, none of the other wives of Singaporean or Malaysian politicians has commented anything about the dispute.

Wife of founding PM Lee Kuan Yew avoids limelight

Last year, during the Oxley house dispute between PM Lee and his siblings, Lee Wei Ling and Lee Hsien Yang, the siblings issued a public statement revealing Ho Ching’s pervasive influence which “extends well beyond her job purview”. Ho Ching is currently the CEO of Temasek Holdings which is a state-owned investment company controlling part of the sovereign wealth funds of Singapore.

The siblings told Singaporeans that Singapore has no such thing as the wife of the prime minister being a ‘first lady’.

“Lee Kuan Yew was Prime Minister from 1959 to 1990. During those many years, his wife (our mother) consistently avoided the limelight, remaining his stalwart supporter and advisor in private,” they wrote.

“She lived discreetly, and set a high bar for the conduct of a prime minister’s wife. She would never instruct Permanent Secretaries or senior civil servants.”

However, when it comes to their sister-in-law, Ho Ching’s turn to be PM’s wife, they said, “The contrast between her (their mother) and Ho Ching could not be more stark.”

“While Ho Ching holds no elected or official position in government, her influence is pervasive, and extends well beyond her job purview,” they added.

Perhaps Ho Ching merely is just trying to be a good wife helping her husband engaging in the social media space. What do you think?