Ng Eng Hen (Chinese: 黄永宏; pinyin: Huáng Yǒnghóng; born 10 December 1958)[1] is a Singaporean politician who has been serving as the Minister for Defence since 2011. A member of the governing People's Action Party (PAP), he is a Member of the 14th Parliament and has been representing the Toa Payoh Central ward of Bishan–Toa Payoh Group Representation Constituency (GRC) since 2001. He was also previously Minister for Manpower (2004–2006) and Minister for Education (2008–2011).

Ng Eng Hen
黄永宏
Ng Eng Hen 2.jpg
Ng in 2021
Minister for Defence
Assumed office
21 May 2011
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byTeo Chee Hean
ConstituencyBishan–Toa Payoh GRC
Member of the Singapore Parliament
for Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC
(Toa Payoh Central)
Assumed office
25 October 2001
Preceded byIbrahim Othman (PAP)
Majority32,259 (34.52%)
Leader of the House
In office
31 May 2011 – 30 September 2015
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
DeputyHeng Chee How
Preceded byMah Bow Tan
Succeeded byGrace Fu
Minister for Education
In office
1 April 2008 – 20 May 2011
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byTharman Shanmugaratnam
Succeeded byHeng Swee Keat
Minister for Manpower
In office
12 August 2004 – 29 May 2006
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byLee Boon Yang
Succeeded byGan Kim Yong
Second Minister for Defence
In office
1 July 2005 – 20 May 2011
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byTeo Chee Hean
Succeeded byNone
Personal details
Born (1958-12-10) 10 December 1958 (age 63)[1]
Singapore
Political partyPeople's Action Party
Spouse(s)Ivy Lim Swee Lian
Children4
Alma materNational University of Singapore
Signature

Before entering politics, Ng was a consultant surgeon at the Singapore General Hospital and later a private surgical oncologist at Mount Elizabeth Hospital. He made his political debut in the 2001 general election as part of a five-member PAP team contesting in Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC. The PAP team won by an uncontested walkover and Ng had been a Member of Parliament since then after winning the subsequent general elections.

BackgroundEdit

A Chinese Singaporean of Henghua descent, Ng and his five siblings lived in a rental flat in Zion Road during his childhood. He attended Anglo-Chinese School and National Junior College before he completed medical school at the National University of Singapore. He also underwent fellowship training in surgical oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.[2]

Ng was a consultant surgeon at the Singapore General Hospital from 1992 to 1997 before he went into private practice in Mount Elizabeth Hospital as a surgical oncologist from 1997 to 2001.[3]

Political careerEdit

 
Ng in November 2005

Ng made his political debut in the 2001 general election as part of a five-member People's Action Party (PAP) team contesting in Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC. The PAP team won by an uncontested walkover so Ng became a Member of Parliament representing the Toa Payoh Central ward of Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC. Since 25 October 2001, he has been the Member of Parliament for that ward, having successfully retained his seat in subsequent general elections. He is also an adviser to the Bishan-Toa Payoh Town Council and Bishan-Toa Payoh grassroots organisations.

In 2002, Ng was appointed Minister of State at the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Manpower.[4]

In August 2004, Ng was promoted to full Minister and appointed Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Education. In 2005, he relinquished his portfolio as Second Minister for Education and became Second Minister for Defence.[5] In April 2008, he stepped down from his post as Minister for Manpower and took up the portfolio of Minister for Education.

Ng was also Chairman of the Jobs Task Force at the Ministry of Manpower, and Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Low Wage Workers.

In June 2007, Ng was invited by the French ministry of defence to visit the Paris Air Show and also to visit a permanent Republic of Singapore Air Force detachment stationed at Cazaux Air Base.[6][7]

In March 2010, Ng mentioned that the weight of mother-tongue language examinations in the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) might be reduced in order to benefit some students who are weak in their mother-tongue due to the emphasis on the English language in the Singaporean education system. This sparked a debate among Singaporeans who support emphasis on mother-tongue languages in education. Ng subsequently assured Singaporeans that the weight of mother-tongue language in the PSLE would not be reduced.

In 2011, Ng stepped down from his role as Minister for Education and was appointed Minister for Defence. In Parliament, he served as Deputy Leader of the House from 1 April 2007 to 30 May 2011 and later as Leader of the House from 31 May 2011 to 30 September 2015.[5]

In 2017, Ng appeared in episode 20 of the Channel 8 drama When Duty Calls to deliver a speech on National Service.

In 2018, the French government awarded Ng the Legion of Honour.[8][9]

During the 2020 general election, the PAP team led by Ng contesting in Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC won with about 67% of the vote against the Singapore People's Party.[10]

Private lifeEdit

Ng is married to Ivy Ng Swee Lian, a paediatrician and geneticist who is also the Chief Executive Officer of SingHealth.[11] They have four children born between 1984 and 1994.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "PMO | Dr NG Eng Hen". 20 November 2018.
  2. ^ Ng Eng Hen (7 March 2011). "Social Mobility — The Singapore Story: Past, Present and Future". Ministry of Education, Singapore. Archived from the original on 19 October 2014.
  3. ^ "Introducing New Ministers: Ng Eng Hen" (PDF). Singapore. Singapore Embassy, Washington, D.C. January 2003. p. 4. Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 October 2007.
  4. ^ "Dr. Ng Eng Hen". Prime Minister's Office, Singapore. 20 November 2018. Archived from the original on 23 November 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Biography: Dr Ng Eng Hen". Ministry of Defence, Singapore. Archived from the original on 4 June 2018.
  6. ^ "Second Minister for Defence Visits France". Ministry of Defence, Singapore. 15 June 2007. Archived from the original on 4 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Bilateral visits since 1977". Embassy of France in Singapore. Archived from the original on 4 June 2018.
  8. ^ Ordre national de la Légion d'honneur "Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen conferred French Legion of Honour award". Singapore: Channel News Asia. 20 February 2018.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  9. ^ "Le ministre singapourien de la Défense décoré de la Légion d'Honneur". Le Petit Journal Singapour (in French). Singapore. 20 February 2018. Archived from the original on 4 June 2018.
  10. ^ hermesauto (2020-07-11). "GE2020 official results: PAP wins Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC in 3rd successive challenge by SPP". The Straits Times. Retrieved 2020-07-15.
  11. ^ Prof Ivy Ng "Senior Management". SingHealth.

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
None
Second Minister for Education
2002 - 2003
Succeeded by
None
Preceded by Second Minister for Defence
2003 – 2011
Succeeded by
None
Preceded by Minister for Manpower
2003 – 2008
Acting: 2003–2004
Succeeded by
Preceded by Minister for Education
2008 – 2011
Succeeded by
Preceded by Minister for Defence
2011 – present
Incumbent
Parliament of Singapore
Preceded by
Ibrahim Othman
Member of Parliament for Bishan–Toa Payoh GRC
(Toa Payoh Central)

2001 – present
Incumbent
Preceded by Leader of the House
2011 – 2015
Succeeded by