PM Lee released a press statement today (29 Apr) announcing changes to the Cabinet and other appointments.
This is the third round of changes after the 2011 General Election, and comes just eight months after the last round in August last year.
He said, “Singapore is going through an important transition. We are creating opportunities for all by upgrading our workers’ skills and raising our productivity. We are helping Singaporeans lead more fulfilling lives by promoting sports and culture, and engaging our youth in nation-building. We are giving Singaporeans more peace of mind by strengthening our social safety nets through policies like the Pioneer Generation Package and MediShield-Life.”
“These major policy shifts require good political leadership, close coordination across ministries, effective ground implementation, and strong support from Singaporeans.”
As such Mr Lee said that he is strengthening the Cabinet line-up to address the priorities and challenges, and see Singapore through the next phase of development.
As part of the changes, he is promoting Mr Tan Chuan-Jin and Mr Lawrence Wong to full Minister of Manpower and MCCY respectively with effect from 1 May. In addition, Mr Lawrence Wong will also become the 2nd Minister for Communications and Information.
“They have performed well since taking office, and mastered their portfolios. They have also worked hard on the ground, winning the respect and trust of Singaporeans,” Mr Lee said.
Other changes include:
• Mr Sam Tan will be promoted to Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the MCCY. He will relinquish his current appointment in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He will also step down as Mayor of Central Singapore CDC on 27 May 2014, at the end of his Mayor’s term.
• Dr Lam Pin Min will be appointed as Minister of State in the Ministry of Health with effect from 1 Aug 2014.
• Ms Denise Phua will replace Mr Sam Tan as the Mayor of Central Singapore CDC with effect from 27 May 2014.
• Dr Amy Khor will relinquish her appointment as Mayor of South West CDC on 27 May 2014, at the end of her Mayor’s term. She will continue as the Senior Minister of State in the Ministries of Health and of Manpower.
• Ms Low Yen Ling will replace Dr Amy Khor Lean Suan as Mayor of South West CDC with effect from 27 May 2014. Ms Low will also be appointed as Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, concurrent with her present appointment in the Ministry of Social and Family Development.
For Mr Sam Tan, he will be helping Mr Lee in PMO to coordinate delivery of social policies across multiple ministries, and especially implementation on the ground.
Ms Low Yen Ling will help Lawrence Wong to implement the Youth Corps Singapore programme and expand the youth outreach initiatives, and augment efforts to engage the arts community, and Chinese cultural and clan groups.
Dr Lam Pin Min, as Minister of State of MOH, is expected to augment Health Minister Gan. Mr Lee said, “To reinforce Mr Gan Kim Yong in MOH, I am appointing Dr Lam Pin Min as an additional Minister of State. He will play an important role in MOH’s efforts to review our policies and develop new models of care, especially in our aged care and primary care sectors, as outlined in the Healthcare 2020 Master Plan.”
In the case of Dr Amy Khor, relinquishing her appointment as Mayor of South West CDC will help her focus on implementing the Pioneer Generation Package and helping Singapore’s pioneers understand and benefit from the package.
Mr Lee said, “These changes are part of my Government’s continuing leadership renewal efforts. I expect to do further reshuffles from time to time, to ensure that we always have the best team for Singapore.”