SINGAPORE - Mr Lee Kuan Yew supported the idea of a memorial for Singapore's founding fathers, but believed that a personality cult around him would not help Singapore last, said Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen.
Mr Lee, who died on March 23, did not want monuments built for him, and was adamant his house at 38 Oxley Road should be demolished.
He came to these decisions after careful thought, Dr Ng said in a Facebook post on Tuesday. "He supported the idea of a memorial for our founding fathers that could teach future generations about the values and beliefs that built up a successful Singapore, but Mr Lee believed that a personality cult around him would not help Singapore last," he wrote.
To turn Mr Lee's house into a museum would be the easier option, but "it would be simply a casual visit of reminders past for the visitors", said Dr Ng.
Mr Lee wanted Singaporeans to "keep Singapore going", he added. "He wanted us and future generations of Singaporeans to be his living legacies in a Singapore that would stand the test of time."
There have been suggestions from MPs to rename the airport after the late Mr Lee, put his image on Singapore's currency or designate an annual Founders' Day.
On Monday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong told Parliament that a committee will be formed to conceptualise a memorial for Singapore's founding fathers, including the late Mr Lee.