Teo Chee Hean

Teo Chee Hean (Chinese: 张志贤; pinyin: Zhāng Zhìxián; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Tiuⁿ Chì-hiân; Teochew pronunciation in Tâi-lô: Tionn Tsì-hiêng; born 27 December 1954)[1] is a Singaporean politician and former two-star rear-admiral who has been serving as Senior Minister of Singapore since 2019 alongside Tharman Shanmugaratnam and Coordinating Minister for National Security since 2015. A member of the governing People's Action Party, he has been the Member of Parliament (MP) representing the Pasir Ris West division of Pasir Ris–Punggol GRC since 2001.

Teo Chee Hean
张志贤
Teo Chee Hean 2.jpg
Teo in 2021
Senior Minister of Singapore
Assumed office
1 May 2019
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byGoh Chok Tong (2011)
S. Jayakumar (2011)
Coordinating Minister for National Security
Assumed office
21 May 2011
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byWong Kan Seng
Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore
In office
1 April 2009 – 30 April 2019
Serving with Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Preceded byS. Jayakumar
Succeeded byHeng Swee Keat
Lawrence Wong
Minister for Home Affairs
In office
21 May 2011 – 30 September 2015
Prime MinisterLee Hsien Loong
Second MinisterS. Iswaran
(2011–2015)
Masagos Zulkifli (2015)
Preceded byK. Shanmugam
Succeeded byK. Shanmugam
Minister for Defence
In office
1 August 2003 – 20 May 2011
Prime MinisterGoh Chok Tong
(1990–2004)
Lee Hsien Loong
(2004–present)
Second MinisterNg Eng Hen
Preceded byTony Tan
Succeeded byNg Eng Hen
Minister for Education
In office
25 January 1997 – 31 July 2003
Prime MinisterGoh Chok Tong
Preceded byLee Yock Suan
Succeeded byTharman Shanmugaratnam
Minister for the Environment
In office
17 April 1995 – 24 January 1997
Acting: 17 April 1995 – 14 January 1996
Prime MinisterGoh Chok Tong
Preceded byMah Bow Tan
Succeeded byYeo Cheow Tong
Member of Parliament
for Pasir Ris–Punggol GRC
(Pasir Ris West)
Assumed office
17 October 2001
Preceded byConstituency established
Majority44,466 (28.30%)
Member of Parliament
for Pasir Ris GRC
(Pasir Ris–Loyang)
In office
26 June 1997 – 17 October 2001
Preceded byCharles Chong (PAP)
Succeeded byConstituency abolished
Member of Parliament
for Marine Parade GRC
(Joo Chiat)
In office
20 December 1992 – 15 December 1996
Preceded byLim Chee Onn (PAP)
Succeeded byChan Soo Sen (PAP)
Personal details
Born (1954-12-27) 27 December 1954 (age 67)[1]
Colony of Singapore
Political partyPeople's Action Party
SpouseChew Poh Yim (died. 2021)
Children2
Alma materUniversity of Manchester (BS)
Imperial College London (MS)
Harvard University (MPA)
Signature
Military service
Branch/serviceRepublic of Singapore Navy
Years of service1972–1992
RankRear-Admiral

A recipient of the President's Scholarship and Singapore Armed Forces Overseas Scholarship, Teo served in the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) between 1972 and 1992, and attained the rank Rear-Admiral (Two-Star). He served as Chief of Navy between 1991 and 1992 before leaving the Navy and enter politcs.

He made his political debut in the 1992 by-elections in Marine Parade GRC as part of a four-member PAP team. He had served as Deputy Prime Minister between 2009 and 2019, Minister for the Environment between 1995 and 1997, Minister for Education between 1997 and 2003, Minister for Defence between 2003 and 2011 and Minister for Home Affairs between 2011 and 2015. Teo was part of the ministerial committee of the Smart Nation and Digital Government Group (SNDGG).

Within the PAP, Teo was First Assistant Secretary-General in the party's Central Executive Committee (CEC) before he was succeeded by Heng Swee Keat in November 2018.[2]

EducationEdit

Teo was educated at St. Joseph's Institution before he was awarded the President's Scholarship and Singapore Armed Forces Overseas Scholarship in 1973. He graduated from the University of Manchester in 1976 with a Bachelor of Science with first class honours degree in electrical engineering and management science.

He subsequently went on to complete a Master of Science with distinction degree in computing science at Imperial College London in 1977. He also completed a Master of Public Administration degree at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1986, where he was named a Littauer Fellow.

CareerEdit

Military careerEdit

Teo joined in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) in 1972 and was commissioned as a naval officer at the SAFTI Military Institute in 1973. He went on to hold various command and staff appointments in the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and the Joint Staff before his appointment as Chief of Navy in 1991 with the rank of Rear-Admiral (Two-Star) before leaving the SAF on 7 December 1992 to contest in the 1992 by-elections in Marine Parade GRC.

Political careerEdit

Teo made his political debut in the 1992 by-elections in Marine Parade GRC as part of a four-member PAP team led by Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong. After the PAP team won 72.9% of the vote against three opposition parties, Teo was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) representing the Joo Chiat ward of Marine Parade GRC. He was subsequently appointed as Minister of State for Finance, Minister of State for Communications and Minister of State for Defence.

In April 1995, Teo was appointed as Senior Minister of State for Defence and Acting Minister for the Environment. In January 1996, he was promoted to full Minister and given the Cabinet portfolios of Minister for the Environment and Second Minister for Defence.

Teo switched to contesting in Pasir Ris GRC during the 1997 general election and the four-member PAP team led by him won 70.9% of the vote against the Workers' Party. Teo thus elected as the MP representing the Pasir Ris Loyang ward of Pasir Ris GRC. In subsequent Cabinet reshuffles, he became Minister for Education while continuing to serve as Second Minister for Defence.

During the 2001 general election, Teo led the five-member PAP team contesting in the newly formed Pasir Ris–Punggol GRC and won an uncontested walkover. After winning the general election, he continued to hold his previous Cabinet portfolios while becoming the MP representing the Pasir Ris West ward of Pasir Ris–Punggol GRC. On 1 August 2003, Teo was appointed as Minister for Defence and Minister-in-charge of the Civil Service.

During the 2006 general election, Teo led a six-member PAP team to contest in Pasir–Ris Punggol GRC again and won 68.7% of the vote against the Singapore Democratic Alliance. He retained his parliamentary seat and continued holding his Cabinet portfolios. On 1 April 2009, Teo was appointed as one of two Deputy Prime Ministers, in addition to his portfolios as Minister for Defence and Minister-in-charge of the Civil Service.

Teo led a six-member PAP team to contest in Pasir–Ris Punggol GRC in the 2011 general election and won 64.79% of the vote against the Singapore Democratic Alliance. On 18 May 2011, Teo relinquished his Cabinet portfolio of Minister for Defence and took up the positions of Minister for Home Affairs and Coordinating Minister for National Security, while concurrently serving as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister-in-charge of the Civil Service.

On 1 May 2019, Teo relinquished his appointment as Deputy Prime Minister to become a Senior Minister, while retaining his position as Coordinating Minister for National Security.[3] In his new role, he also oversaw four departments under the Prime Minister's Office; Smart Nation and Digital Government Group, National Security Coordination Secretariat, National Population and Talent Division, and the National Climate Change Secretariat.[4]

Personal lifeEdit

Teo was married to Chew Poh Yim, who was the director of the business consultancy and part-time marketing management at Nanyang Polytechnic's School of Business Management. Chew graduated from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology in 1977 with a Bachelor of Science with honours degree in biochemistry. In 2015, she founded Stroke Support Station, a volunteering organisation that provides assistance to stroke survivors and caregivers. Chew died on 31 October 2021 at the age of 67.[5] The couple have one son and one daughter.

Teo was also President of the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) between 1984 and 2014, and an advisor to the Singapore Dragon Boat Association.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "PMO | Mr TEO Chee Hean". Prime Minister's Office Singapore. 1 September 2020.
  2. ^ PAP appoints Khaw Boon Wan as chairman Archived 3 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine, channelnewsasia.com, 1 June 2011
  3. ^ "Heng Swee Keat to be promoted to DPM in Cabinet reshuffle". Channel NewsAsia. 23 April 2019. Archived from the original on 23 April 2019. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
  4. ^ "Mr TEO Chee Hean". Prime Minister's Office Singapore. Prime Minister's Office Singapore. Retrieved 6 April 2021.
  5. ^ Ho, Grace (3 November 2021). "Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean's wife, founder of a stroke support charity, dies aged 67". The Straits Times. Retrieved 4 November 2021.

BibliographyEdit

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by Minister for the Environment
15 January 1996 – 24 January 1997
Acting: 17 April 1995 – 14 January 1996
Succeeded by
Recreated
Title last held by
Lee Boon Yang
Second Minister for Defence
15 January 1996 – 31 July 2003
Succeeded by
Preceded by Minister for Education
25 January 1997 – 31 July 2003
Succeeded by
Preceded by Minister for Defence
1 August 2003 – 20 May 2011
Succeeded by
Preceded by Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore
1 April 2009 – 30 April 2019
Served alongside: Wong Kan Seng (2005 – 2011),
Tharman Shanmugaratnam (2011 – present)
Succeeded by
Preceded by Minister for Home Affairs
21 May 2011 – 30 September 2015
Succeeded by
Preceded by Coordinating Minister for National Security (Singapore)
21 May 2011 – present
Incumbent
Vacant
Title last held by
S. Jayakumar
Goh Chok Tong
2011
Senior Minister of Singapore
2019–present
Served alongside: Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Incumbent
Parliament of Singapore
Preceded by
Lim Chee Onn
Member of Parliament for
Marine Parade GRC (Joo Chiat)

1992 – 1997
Succeeded byas MP for East Coast GRC (Joo Chiat)
New constituency Member of Parliament for
Pasir Ris GRC (Pasir Ris Loyang)

1997 – 2001
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for
Pasir Ris–Punggol GRC (Pasir Ris West)

2001 – present
Incumbent
Military offices
Preceded by
Rear-Admiral James Leo
Chief of the Republic of Singapore Navy
1991 – 1992
Succeeded by
Rear-Admiral Kwek Siew Jin