Over the weekend, Temasek Holdings announced that Mdm Ho Ching would be extending her part-time sabbatical leave to six months until October. So one wonders what she’s up to in her downtime. Here are 5 possible things she could be doing.
Believe it or not, she spends a good portion of her time helping with community service and charitable organisations. Being Singapore’s version of Bill Gates, she’s the Patron of Assisi Hospice and the founding Chairman of Trailblazer Foundation. According to the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame, she takes particular interest in special needs children, healthcare and the welfare and development of children. Well, I guess if you have the money, perhaps the best thing to do is give it away.
- Taking a well-deserved holiday
Everyone needs a break sometime and if you can afford it, you definitely should. Mdm Ho is already in her 60s and has already made her mark on the world. TIME magazine had previously picked her amongst the “100 most influential men and women” and Forbes ranked her as the 43rd most powerful woman in the world in 2015. With her kids all grown up, it’s probably the best time to take a little break and relax.
- Celebrating Singapore’s 50th Year of Independence in style
It’s a big year for Singapore and as the Prime Minister’s wife, she has to keep up the appearances. Mdm Ho has been appearing more frequently at SG50-related events lately. She was present at the recent Jubilee Day of Prayer and especially during SEA Games. And this leads on to the next possible activity.
- The next big candidate for elections
One of the big conspiracy theories is Mdm Ho is that she is increasing her public profile to launch her own campaign to become a Member of Parliament (MP). With elections seemingly around the corner, some believe she may contest the next election in the same team as her husband. While I’m sceptical about this, it’s a possibility.
- Campaign director for PM Lee
Another big rumour coming out of social media is Mdm Ho is going to become the campaign director for Mr Lee. While plausible, some may argue she does not have the expertise to run an election campaign. But if this is true, she may yet be able to change the image of the incumbent party with a more womanly touch.