Singtel CEO first woman on Council of Presidential Advisers

President Halimah Yacob shaking hands with Ms Chua Sock Koong, who took her oath before Judge of Appeal Judith Prakash at the Istana yesterday. Ms Chua is an alternate member of the Council of Presidential Advisers.
President Halimah Yacob shaking hands with Ms Chua Sock Koong, who took her oath before Judge of Appeal Judith Prakash at the Istana yesterday. Ms Chua is an alternate member of the Council of Presidential Advisers.PHOTO: HALIMAH YACOB/FACEBOOK

Singtel group chief executive Chua Sock Koong has become the first woman appointed to the Council of Presidential Advisers (CPA).

She was among the three people appointed to the council yesterday at a ceremony held at the Istana. The other two were Mr Eddie Teo, who was appointed CPA chairman, and council member Chua Thian Poh, who was previously an alternate member.

Ms Chua, an alternate member, was nominated and appointed by President Halimah Yacob.

The trio took their oaths before Judge of Appeal Judith Prakash.

The council comprises eight members and two alternate members. It advises the President on the use of her discretionary and custodial powers in safeguarding past reserves of the Government, Fifth Schedule Statutory Boards and government companies. It also advises her on the appointments of various key personnel in the public service.

Ms Chua joined Singtel in 1989, and rose to be its group chief executive in April 2007. She sits on the boards of several companies, including the Defence Science and Technology Agency and telecommunications firm Bharti Airtel. She has a bachelor's degree in accountancy from the then University of Singapore. She is also a Fellow Member of the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants and a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder.

Ms Chua said she was extremely honoured to be appointed to the council, adding: "I hope to contribute to the council's diversity of views and look forward to advising President Halimah as she exercises her custodial powers."

 

Mr Teo, whose move was announced last month, succeeds Mr J. Y. Pillay. A former President's Scholar, he has spent nearly 50 years in public service, 10 of them as Public Service Commission chairman.

He was previously director of the Internal Security Department and permanent secretary in the Ministry of Defence and Prime Minister's Office, among other postings.

Mr Chua is chairman and chief executive of Ho Bee Group, and was appointed an alternate member in April 2017. He serves on the boards of several other companies and community organisations.

He is currently chairman of the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre. He is also honorary president of the Singapore Federation of Chinese Clan Associations and the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as well as immediate past president of the Singapore Hokkien Huay Kuan.

He has received several awards, including the Distinguished Service Order in 2014.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 03, 2019, with the headline 'Singtel CEO first woman on Council of Presidential Advisers'. Print Edition | Subscribe