SINGAPORE: The last will made by Mr Lee Kuan Yew is "final and legally binding", Mr Lee Hsien Yang, the youngest son of Singapore's founding Prime Minister said on Thursday (Jun 15), after his elder brother Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said he had "grave concerns" about how their father's last will was prepared.
At issue, in particular, was the removal and subsequent re-insertion of a clause stating the late Mr Lee's wish that his house at 38 Oxley Road be demolished after his death, PM Lee noted in a statutory declaration he submitted to a ministerial committee set up to consider the future of the house.
The statutory declaration was made public by PM Lee's lawyers earlier Thursday evening.
In response, the younger Mr Lee noted that his brother had "raised no legal challenge to Lee Kuan Yew's will in the many months after it was read".
"Probate was granted in October 2015, so the will is full, final, and legally binding," Mr Lee Hsien Yang wrote in a Facebook post shortly after the statutory declaration was made public.
The younger Mr Lee added that the Prime Minister's public statement to Parliament contradicted the statutory declaration he had made to the ministerial committee.
"Does he or does he not believe that Lee Kuan Yew was unwavering in his wish that the house be demolished? Is his statement to Parliament false, or is his statement under oath false?"
FINAL WILL GAVE ME A "CLEAR RIGHT" TO LIVE AT OXLEY ROAD: LEE WEI LING
In his statutory declaration, PM Lee said that there had been no indication that the demolition clause would be re-inserted in Mr Lee's last will, and it appeared that his father had simply wanted to reinstate the equal division of his estate among the three children.
The late Mr Lee had made changes in his sixth and penultimate will to give his only daughter, Dr Lee Wei Ling, an extra share.
In his final will, however, Mr Lee reverted to his earlier decision to give each of his children an equal share, said PM Lee, adding that the issue had been a subject of discussion between Mr Lee and his youngest son Hsien Yang.
Dr Lee refuted this point in a Facebook post later on Thursday, saying quotes from her were used "out of context" to suggest that Mr Lee Hsien Yang and his wife were trying to "cheat" her in their father’s final will.
"I had much earlier and repeatedly made clear to Hsien Loong and Ho Ching the truth that there was no duplicity by Hsien Yang and his wife, Suet Fern," she wrote.
Instead, Dr Lee said, it had been PM Lee and his wife, Mdm Ho Ching, who had been "unhappy" that Dr Lee had been given the right to live at the Oxley Road home, in their father's first will.
"They pushed and persuaded my father very hard on this issue," she said, adding that it resulted in her "losing (her) right to stay in the house" in 2012. "I was very upset and quarrelled with my father."
Dr Lee added that it had been her younger brother's wife, Mrs Lee Suet Fern, who had interceded with her father. She also posted screengrabs of emails from Mrs Lee Suet Fern on this matter.
"My father did reinstate me and gave me an extra 1/7 share as a result," Dr Lee said.
"I, too, was concerned about my right to live at 38 Oxley Road. Lee Kuan Yew’s final will of 17 December 2013 gave me that right," she added.