Succession planning important

It was good to know that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was able to continue with his National Day Rally speech after feeling unwell just about an hour earlier ("Anxiety, then relief, as PM completes rally after taking ill"; yesterday).

He showed what a responsible and dedicated leader he was in wanting to finish sharing his insights with Singaporeans on how they needed to prepare and brace themselves for the tough times ahead in a fast-changing world.

We had an earlier scare several months ago when Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat suffered a stroke. It's good to know that Mr Heng has recovered sufficiently to return to the Cabinet ("Heng Swee Keat to resume work"; yesterday).

These incidents are a reminder that the next team of ministers needs to be ready to take over the leadership of Singapore. PM Lee has said that his successor must be ready to take over soon after the next general election. He also said the issue of succession was all the more important to him, in the light of what happened to him at the rally on Sunday.

Jeff Tan Hong Liak

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 23, 2016, with the headline 'Succession planning important'. Print Edition | Subscribe