SINGAPORE: Having the People's Action Party's fourth generation leadership in place and settled is an "urgent challenge" for the New Year, said Emeritus Senior Minister (ESM) Goh Chok Tong on Sunday (Dec 31).
Writing on Facebook, he laid out a timeline for what he hopes to see achieved in 2018 - for the current fourth generation cohort to pick a leader amongst themselves and for Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to designate his potential successor.
"Every succession is different, but one thing remains the same: each cohort will have to pick one amongst themselves to lead, and support him. I hope the current cohort will do so in six to nine months' time.
"Whoever is chosen, the team will have to work together, bring in others, and gel to form a cohesive fourth generation Cabinet," said Mr Goh.
He added: "They must write a new inspiring chapter for Singapore, be courageous to make difficult decisions, stand tall with integrity, and earn the respect and trust of Singaporeans and the world at large."
Amid the wet weather on New Year's Eve, Mr Goh noted that although 2017 did not end with the glorious sunset he had hoped for, 2018 offers a fresh start.
"We need to be in good spirits to tackle the pressing and longer term challenges for Singapore," he wrote.
Mr Goh had in recent months, highlighted the need for leadership renewal, for the PAP's fourth generation of leaders to quickly establish themselves as a cohesive team as well as for a more inclusive team.
"This is my wish for the new year," said the former prime minister on Sunday. "A Singapore in good hands, a Singapore that all of us build together." He also wished all Singaporeans a Happy New Year.