Photo credit: SARAH ALYSHA

PM Lee announces Cabinet reshuffle, takes effect from May 15

Lawrence Wong is named the new Finance Minister, Ong Ye Kung is new Health Minister, while Chan Chun Sing becomes new Education Minister.

Nigel Chin

Started writing for the passion. Now writing because it’s the only thing I can do.

Published: 23 April 2021, 3:24 PM

Mr Lawerence Wong will become the new Finance Minister after the latest Cabinet reshuffle, which takes effect from May 15, was announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. 

Mr Wong takes over the role from Mr Heng Swee Keat, who earlier this month announced his decision to step down as the leader of the fourth generation ministers. As part of the move, Mr Heng will also relinquish his Finance portfolio. 

The announcement, made on Friday (Apr 23), also sees Mr Ong Ye Kung named as the new Health Minister. Mr Chan Chun Sing takes over his previous role as Education Minister, while Mr Gan Kim Yong moves over to the Ministry of Trade and Industry. 

Other changes include Ms Josephine Teo becoming the new Minister of Communications and Information, while Dr Tan See Leng takes over the Ministry of Manpower. Mr S Iswaran was also named as the new Transport Minister. 

Ms Teo is also appointed Minister-in-charge of the Smart Nation Initiative, taking over from Mr Vivian Balakrishnan, and Minister-in-charge of the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore, taking over from Mr Iswaran. 

Mr Edwin Tong, the Minister of Culture, Community and Youth, will be appointed Deputy Chairman of the People’s Association, taking over from Mr Chan.

PM Lee said in his announcement that he is making a more extensive reshuffle than usual this early in the term of Government, which began last July, because of two reasons. 

The first is the many repercussions with Mr Heng relinquishing his finance portfolio. The second is because he is moving ministers heading the frontline ministries dealing with COVID-19, such as health, manpower and trade and industry. 

PM Lee had considered making these changes after the previous general election, but did not do so as the country was still in the thick of the battle against COVID-19. He is making these changes now as the situation is more stable.

He added the new changes will allow the 4G ministers to gain new experience and exposure, noting that most of them have already accumulated experience in a wide range of portfolios. 

Full list of changes

Minister of Education: Chan Chun Sing

Minister of Health: Ong Ye Kung (Mr Ong will also co-chair the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force with Mr Wong)

Minister of Finance: Lawrence Wong

Minister of Trade and Industry: Gan Kim Yong 

Minister of Transport: S Iswaran

Minister of Communications and Information: Josephine Teo 

Minister of Manpower: Tan See Leng 

Other changes

Ms Sim Ann is also appointed Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She will continue as the Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of National Development, but will relinquish her role as Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of Communications and Information.

Mr Chee Hong Tat will relinquish his appointment as Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 

Dr Koh Poh Koon is appointed Senior Minister of State in the Ministry of Manpower. 

Mr Tan Kiat How is appointed Minister of State in the Ministry of Communications and Information. He relinquishes his appointment as Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office. 

Ms Rahayu Mahzam is appointed Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Health.

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