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Lee Hsien Yang is modest and more in touch with the ground: Former NTUC Income CEO Tan Kin Lian

In his recent Facebook post on 27 Dec, the former Chief Executive Office of NTUC Income Tan Kin Lian said that he has “a positive impression of Lee Hsien Yang” and believes that “he has different values from his older brother”, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

It appears that Mr Tan shared the post in response to a netizen’s question on whether Mr Lee gained his position as the CEO of SingTel and F&N out of “meritocracy”. A question that seems to stem from the fact that Mr Lee HY is the son of late Lee Kuan Yew, the founding Prime Minister of Singapore.

In his post, he revealed that he had asked a union leader of the workers in SingTel on how the Prime Minister’s younger brother was like a few months after he became the CEO of the company.

“He replied that Lee HY was quite approachable. He travelled on economy class when doing business for SingTel,” said Mr Tan.

He further added, “I felt that Lee HY was quite modest and more in touch with the ground. He was not arrogant of lived in the ivory tower. I had a positive impression of Lee HY at that time. I did not know much about him in the later years. But I can understand and support his actions in taking a different position from Lee HL. He has different values from his older brother”.

Last year, Mr Lee HY and his sister, Dr Lee Weiling made international news after they issued a joint statement, delivering harsh criticisms of PM Lee, saying that they are disturbed by the character, conduct, motives and leadership of their brother, and the role of his wife, Ho Ching. Alleging that PM Lee had abused his powers and position as PM for personal agenda. In response to the allegations, PM Lee cleared himself in Parliament of any wrong doings and closed the matter without any official investigation.

Recently, Mr Lee HY came into the limelight once again after he “donated to the crowdfunding campaign by blogger Leong Sze Hian to fund his defence and counterclaim against PM Lee in the latter’s defamation suit,” as reported by Yahoo News Singapore.

“The younger Lee confirmed with Yahoo News Singapore on Wednesday (26 December) that he had contributed to Leong’s legal funds but didn’t specify the amount.“ but definitely not $1.

Leong Sze Hian who is a “financial consultant and veteran blogger filed a countersuit against Prime Miniseter Lee Hsien Loong on 26 Dec for the abuse of the process of the Court”.

It was reported that “Leong was earlier sued by PM Lee for defamation over a Facebook share he made with an article from TheCoverage.My. The article claimed that editor-in-chief of investigative journalism platform Sarawak Report (SR) Ms Clare Rewcastle had mentioned Singapore as one of the key investigation targets, alongside Switzerland and United States in the 1MDB Scandal during an interview with Malaysian media”.

Upon hearing the younger Lee’s move to donate to the crowdfunding campaign by Leong Sze Hian, many netizens have shared their happiness and thanked him for helping a fellow citizen.

Facebook user Liow Kian Tat thanked him for “joining the force to fight against Ah Loong”.

Another user says that the apart from focusing so much on LHY contribution to the fund, the public needs to understand that “he is just a citizen who wants to help a fellow citizen in a cause he believes in. his family name should not be more influential than others! Let the truth come out and prove we are a rule-of-law nation. This is more important”.

Both Colin Chan and Ricky Emerson Chin support PM Lee’s younger brother and believes that “he is a different character” and is “one who supports truth, righteousness and the future of Singapore/Singaporeans”.

In addition to this, there are also people who believe that Lee Hsien Yang is a good leader and understands the public. As such, Facebook user David Tan said that he once met Mr Lee “during a reservist training in Taiwan in the 80s” and he finds him to be “a grounded leader, and listen to people”.