Dr Lee Wei Ling to continue living in Oxley Road home

Dr Lee Wei Ling to continue living in Oxley Road home

SINGAPORE - The late Mr Lee Kuan Yew's home at 38 Oxley Road will not be demolished yet.

In a parliamentary statement, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that his sister and Mr Lee's only daughter, Dr Lee Wei Ling, had informed him of her decision to continue living in the house.

In his will, the late Mr Lee stated it was he and his late wife Kwa Geok Choo's wish that their house be demolished immediately after his death or after his daughter Dr Lee moves out.

He also stated in his will: "I would ask each of my children to ensure our wishes with respect to the demolition of the house be carried out."

PM Lee added that there were calls to turn the home into a museum and a memorial even before Mr Lee Kuan Yew died.

However, Mr Lee was adamant that the house should be demolished after his passing. He wrote formally to the Cabinet at least twice to put his wishes on the record, indicating that the house "should not be kept as a kind of relic".

PM Lee added that his mother also felt strongly about this when she was alive.

He said: "She was most distressed at the thought of people coming through her private space after she and my father had passed away, to see how they had lived."

"If and when Dr Lee Wei Ling no longer lives in the house, Mr Lee has stated his wishes as to what should be done."

Regarding this matter, several Members of Parliament (MP) have expressed their opinions in Parliament.

MP Irene Ng says she once asked Mr Lee about the home before when he was still alive but his reply was for them "not to let sentiment get in the way of progress".

She suggested that a replica of the basement should be done as part of the memorial.

In addition, MP Ang Wei Neng asked the goverment to digitise images of 38 Oxley Road so future Singaporeans can see the house after demolition.

In reponse to this, PM Lee said that pictures of the house can be taken but it should be demolished.

PM Lee also said that although it will be up to the Government of the day to consider the matter of demolishing the house, he would like to see his father's wishes carried out.

stephluo@sph.com.sg

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