Ho Ching: So powerful yet so elusive

Mdm Ho Ching

The recently released 2017 Forbes Power Women list has Ho Ching in the 28th spot, up two places from last year. She has been on the list every year since 2004.

This year, Ho Ching is ranked above high-powered women like New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern (38), Nikki Haley, US Ambassador to the UN (43), China’s First Lady Peng Liyuan (51) and Hillary Clinton (65).

Ho Ching is consistently rated the most powerful woman in Singapore and among the top 30 in the world – yet she remains so elusive and reclusive. If you run down the list of 100 women, you can be sure that the women (with very few exceptions like Ho Ching) are subject to intense public and media scrutiny. With power comes the added pressure, responsibility and accountability.

Ho Ching is conspicuously different. When was the last time you saw her deliver a speech at an event? Give a media interview? Subject herself to account for anything?

She does not even front the annual press conference to present the Temasek Holdings’ financial scorecard. This is so unlike other major organisations like SingTel and DBS Bank – you can be sure the CEO is front and centre of of it all when their financial performance is presented, fielding questions and giving media interviews. Temasek Holdings appears to adopt the unusual stance of putting the CEO at the back-burner when it comes to media relations, transparency and accountability.

Ho Ching has been CEO of Temasek Holdings since 2004. For many years now, we have been hearing the usual refrain from Temasek Holdings about succession planning. This year, at its annual press conference, the same thing was regurgitated, this time by investment head Dilhan Pillay Sandrasegara: “As we have said over the years, the board has an annual succession review and that’s the discipline we put in place.” We call this PR-speak – rehearsed words that say something but really mean nothing.

There was also the spectacular fallout earlier this year with brother-in-law Lee Hsien Yang and sister-in-law Lee Wei Ling, who made allegations about her abuse of power and undue influence despite her holding no political position. It does come across as somewhat of a rarity that one of the world’s most powerful women for 13 years running does not even hold political office.

The power she wields is undoubted, but what is mystifying is that Ho Ching is totally shielded from any interaction and interface with both the public and the media in today’s age of open and rigorous communication. From time to time, we do see Facebook postings of hers (like holidays shots and monkey making rude gesture) but that’s about it.

Ho Ching is proof that you can have your cake and eat it – she can NOT be appraised and scrutinised, remain elusive and reclusive and yet exert all the power imaginable, away from the public eye, away from the media spotlight.

 

Augustine Low

 

 

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28 Responses to “Ho Ching: So powerful yet so elusive”

  • I'm halimah also jiak liao bee:

    Why is this woman leeching on tax payer’s money and holds no accountability on losses of billions at TH ???
    Why is it that is is not made public her pay and her bonuses ???

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  • Goh:

    She is the real ruler of the country not Pinky!

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  • Pwee:

    Ho Ching has lost billions of dollars for the country and has never been held accountable. How much does she make as CEO of Temasek? Why is it a secret? Scandalous. Shameful.

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  • 陈大婶:

    遥远的东方,续,慈禧之后,最有权势的皇后。

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  • Moe:

    Ho Ching wears the pants, pinky wears the skirt. Well done to the 70% who support them!

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  • Ike:

    And she has many Eunuchs…..

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  • patriot of Temesak:

    Evil LURKS in the Shadow…just like the Dawg…

    Plain UGLY and PURE Evil!!!…Cyanide is no COMPARISON!!!

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  • Samuel S:

    Sorry HC is the wife of useless PM but influential otherwise you think she can be classified a powerful woman. We should organise another Forbes Hopeless Woman of the year! Anyway her skin is so thick that she can’t feel everyone including her immediate families despised her!

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  • Titiana Ann Xavier:

    PM Lee is perceived to be henpecked. Ho Ching is believed to be the puppeteer wearing pants. She pulled the strings and called the shots. As the Matriarch of the Family, she failed to use her power to patch up the acrimonious split between siblings. Instead she is seen as crass and to favour her husband with her monkey gesture. Cannot expect her to make anything great. Like the Empress Dowager, she will bring about the downfall of Singapore.

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  • Maxchewy:

    We should now refer to her not only as the First Lady but as the all-powerful Queen of the Republic of Singapore!
    Bow Low when you meet or see her!
    Bet you she is all fixed to be the next female Prez after our current female Prez, HY, the Indian Makchik. God help us all. Singapore belongs to the Lee family and their elite cronies! Is it an oligarchy or what?
    MC
    3.12.17

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  • MarBowling:

    The MasterMind behind everything in SinKapore is Mai Hum.

    However, the MIND behind the Master(Mind) is HoLee Jinx. Period!

    HoLee Jinx is answerable and accountable to NO ONE, not even to Mai Hum, except Heaven and the Barn Owl!

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  • Hohoho:

    All the power n all the money for what – can bring to the grave???

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  • NotMyProblem:

    When whatever comes out from the month is nothing but lie, then it would be better not to say anything. One lie needs another lie to cover up.

    It another word, “ask me no question and I tell you no lie”!!!

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  • Johan Petersen:

    You mean that is Ho Ching?
    I thought she was the PM’s maid.
    I have been telling all my friends back home in Norway that the PM of Singapore takes his maid to meet President Obama and President Trump!

    Oh My God!

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  • The owl:

    Hole’s time for accountability will come sooner than later.

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  • nathan:

    She is the Favored One. Her son is the Chosen One. Her Husband the PM is the Unwanted One.

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  • New Egg Yoke:

    Behind every successful man is a woman
    Behind Pinky is a man wife with a DILXX… (hint) rhymes with the extinct DoDo bird.

    Wait for it…TRE will snip snip this gem of a wit. ….Zzzzzzzzz.

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  • Bapak:

    She did let her middle finger does the talking. Don’t say you never hear from her. When she frown even the Indian Halima also afraid. 70% are so proud of her.

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  • hist:

    Ah Long maybe Pm but his wife controls him like a puppet.

    A lot of key people are placed by his wife, the whole ST team his banker class mate, And Terry Clontz into Temasick, Josephine Te, Saw etc. MOstly ball carriers, explains why massive losses expected.

    If she is speaking too much, we will find Ah long totally useless.

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  • Seriously???:

    I don’t know whether there is any truth to hearsay that Ms Saw was Ho Ching’s choice for SMRT CEO many years back. If there is any truth to this, it is absolutely horrendous.

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  • I ejaculated my sperm:

    Ho Chin is who she is.
    The real problem is the Singaporeans.

    They ACCEPT.

    This is called democracy which is fundamentally dependent on the IQ of the majority.

    If they are timid then TMD !!

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  • 鸟龙的人:

    小红点的”影子总统兼总理"

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  • Madam President One Day?:

    Possible!

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  • Bapak:

    Never, by then she should be somewhere else after run-road.

    Madam President One Day?:
    Possible!

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  • National woes:

    Bro., it sounds like empress dowager managing the national treasury.

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  • Maxchewy:

    The Empress Dowager and her consort Pinky are easily worth a billion$$$$$$ Today. They don’t need any more any
    More money to last their lifetime or even their childrens’ No grandkids yet Nor even in the near future.
    The 2 grand shots are mortal humans like us and similar to LKY and Wife. Can only last till the early 90s.
    How many more years they have? So why they need to bleed more millions-$=$$$$$$ from us poor taxpayers?
    I don’t think so. What the duo want is all-encompassing power till their demise just like LKY and Wife!

    MC
    5.12.17

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  • N.Jungne:

    MarBowling:
    The MasterMind behind everything in SinKapore is Mai Hum.

    However, the MIND behind the Master(Mind) is HoLee Jinx. Period!

    HoLee Jinx is answerable and accountable to NO ONE, not even to Mai Hum, except Heaven and the Barn Owl!

    Responses: I agree with you, when completely unleashed the vixen’s tail protruded, but it may be too late.

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  • rukidding:

    In Hokkien saying…..”kiok tio Gu Lan” !

    Right place,…right time !…just in time to “replace” somebody’s “First wife” ( after her harakiri )

    A “failed” CEO of an MNC that went “Bust” in a very short time frame ( under her stewardship)….yet, today,…a very “successful Empress Dowager” ????

    Must thank her “Mentor” ( also dead liow )….Mdm Ting Kwa Kwa !

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