People’s Action Party cabinet ministers gave statements thanking leaving Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew following his announcement of his decision to not contest the next General Election.
“Tuck Yew’s contributions will be sorely missed by the team,” said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Chan Chun Sing in a Facebook post. “He has been a stalwart in steering us through very challenging circumstances in the transport sector.”
Mr Chan added: “I have (had) the opportunity to see his dedication and meticulousness firsthand, and it was a privilege to learn from Tuck Yew. His commitment to make things better has never failed to impress me.”
Mr Chan said Mr Lui had “put in place plans that will not only manage today’s challenges but also tomorrow’s demands” during Lui’s time in the Ministry of Transport. He also said that the Government is thankful for Mr Lui’s “care and concern for the transport sector workers”, and that he “always had the interest of (the) workers in his heart”.
Minister for Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim also lauded Mr Lui for his contributions to his constituency, Moulmein-Kallang GRC.
“Be it at our market visits, community events or the late-night Meet-the-People’s sessions, Tuck Yew’s commitment to his residents is unwavering, and the residents and I are sad to see him go,” wrote Dr Yaacob in a Facebook post.
“He has always had a heart for Singaporeans, and strives to do his best for their needs,” he added.
According to media reports and correspondence between Lui and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, PM Lee and several senior members of the Cabinet had attempted to persuade Mr Lui to change his mind, but failed.
PM Lee said in a letter to Mr Lui that he has done a lot for Singapore over the last decade. He also praised him for putting his heart and soul into the task as Transport Minister. Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who has known Mr Lui for 30 years, said he has brought commitment, an analytical mind, and compassion and concern for people to every responsibility he has undertaken.
In a Facebook post, Law and Foreign Affairs Minister K Shanmugam described Mr Lui as a “person of complete integrity and honesty”, one who spent his life serving the country. “You knew that with Tuck Yew in charge, the billions the Ministry were spending would be disbursed honestly,” he said.
Mr Shanmugam noted that Mr Lui was subjected to “daily incessant attacks but carried on doing his duty, calmly, and with equanimity”.
Minister for Social and Family Development Tan Chuan-Jin echoed Mr Shanmugam’s point, saying in a Facebook note that Mr Lui was “constantly being mocked and vilified, especially by those online”.
“I am sorry that he is stepping down. We will lose a dedicated leader who cared for Singaporeans and Singapore,” he wrote.
Ms Denise Phua, Mr Lui’s fellow MP at Moulmein-Kallang GRC, praised him as “a diligent and sincere leader who treats his residents, grassroots and activists with respect and dignity”.
“He took criticisms and online flaming in his stride, and quietly focused on resolving problems on the ground. I wish he had stayed on to see the fruits of his labour,” Ms Phua wrote on Facebook.