Senior Minister of State for Law Miss Indranee Rajah had shared on Facebook on Monday, 26 June 2017, that there are four possible options for the house of the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew at 38 Oxley Road – demolition, preservation, conservation and compulsory acquisition.
If the house is demolished, Miss Indranee stated that it would clear the way for the owner, Mr Lee Hsien Yang, to appeal for the land to be re-zoned, since the original rationale for the 2-storey zoning in the area for security reasons is also gone with the passing of Mr Lee. If re-zoning or increased plot is granted, the land value will increase well beyond the market value for a 2-storey property. In that event, many developers will line up to by the property. According to analysts, the land is freehold and worth about S$24 million.
If the house is preserved and designated into a national monument, the property would be subject to compulsory acquisition within a year of preservation order and no works can be done to it without the approval of National Heritage Board.
Conservation is less restrictive as works can be done to the building within certain guidelines but the land can be redeveloped.
- Compulsory Acquisition
Mr Lee Hsien Yang would get compensation under the Land Acquisition Act at market value at the time of acquisition. The Government could then demolish the house and “build a tasteful memorial or symbolic marker in a park setting.
Miss Indranee also wrote, “The Government has publicly stated that it will respect those wishes and does not intend to do anything until Dr Lee leaves.”
She also questioned why Mr Lee Hsien Yang is asking for an immediate commitment on demolition and his urgency.
In response to Miss Indranee’s Facebook post, Mr Lee Hsien Yang also responded through a Facebook post on Tuesday, 27 June 2017.
He stated that, “We have never asked the Government to allow us to demolish the house now, only after Wei Ling’s departure.”
He also questioned why the “secret committee” on the house was formed in 2016 and focused on parroting PM Lee Hsien Loong’s attacks on late Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew’s Will.
“SMS Indranee is pretending that the secret committee had an open discussion with Lee Kuan Yew’s Estate about options for the house. Nothing could be further from the truth. The committee refused to state either the options it was considering or its final deliverable,” he wrote.
He further added that both Dr Lee Wei Ling and him, had offered to Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean that the house be demolished after Wei Ling’s departure and a memorial garden be built in its place. However, DPM Teo was reluctant and did not pursue the discussion further while PM Lee rejected the offer.
Source: Channel News Asia