Lee Hsien Loong Would Rather Stay Contactable During Leave Than Appoint Acting PM

The PM is going on 2 weeks leave but did not appoint an acting PM to take over his duties during the period from 17 Dec to 31 Dec. His deputy Heng Swee Keat is coincidentally also on leave on some days during the Prime Minister’s absence.

If the PM is doing such an important job, how is it possible to not have a PM for two weeks? Surely, being “contactable” is not the same as working full-time in office, right?

Heng Swee Keat has assumed the role of acting PM at least twice so far, once in June 2019 and another time during the Christmas 2019 to New Year period. However, this time he goes on leave the same time as PM Lee.

Is fumble Heng trying to avoid being seen as incapable of covering the PM again? Or did he think he had better made himself scarce to avoid embarrassment if the PM has second thoughts about handing over to him?

Is Pinky at all ready to hand over the reins to Heng or is the issue of succession still uncertain and problematic?

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