The governing board of Leong San See Temple in Race Course Road has appointed an acting abbot and another senior monk to run the temple.
The move comes as the current abbot, Venerable Tuan Boon - who has found himself at the centre of media reports over alleged sexual activities - is seriously ill, on dialysis and warded at Farrer Park Hospital. He also suffers from diabetes.
"Given Ven Tuan Boon's serious medical condition, the governing board of the temple held a management meeting on Friday and with immediate effect appointed Ven Chuan Wu to be acting abbot and Ven Wei Kang to assist," the temple said in a statement yesterday.
"We are doing this in the interest of corporate governance and to ensure the smooth running of the temple. Internally, we will also be looking at this case and address any concerns that may have arisen," the statement added.
Acting abbot Ven Chuan Wu is currently the abbot of the prominent Beow Hong Lim Temple in Penang and has been a trustee of Leong San See for over six years. Ven Wei Kang, who is from another Buddhist temple in Singapore, has helped regularly at the Leong San See Temple for several years.
Leong San See Temple has lodged a police report against a Facebook user who on Thursday posted photos and descriptions allegedly of Ven Tuan Boon engaging in sex acts with men. The Facebook user, whose page uses the temple's name in Chinese, claimed in his posts that he was a devotee and wanted to expose the truth to protect the religion.
The temple's governing board also said that it has reported the matter to the police and the Commissioner of Charities. It added that the board viewed the matter seriously. "We note with anguish and sadness several media reports about Ven Tuan Boon involving some unflattering allegations.
"Firstly, we wish to say the Ven Tuan Boon is very distressed by all these reports especially since it comes at a time when he is taken ill. We seek that his privacy be respected and wish him a full recovery," the statement said.
The board said it was alerted on Thursday to a dozen malicious posts from an unknown Facebook account which were posted from about 1pm onwards. It added: "We'd like to emphasise that this Facebook account is not created by the temple and is created by an unauthorised person."
Ven Tuan Boon, 58, who suffered a stroke in June last year, was previously from Poo Thor Jee Temple in Tanjong Pagar.
He was featured in the news in 1995 when he helped counsel a death row inmate as a prison counsellor and then again in November 2004 when he helped to chant prayers before an urn containing the remains of eight-year-old murder victim Huang Na was laid to rest on an altar in her home.