'My kids have enough money': Retiree wills $20 million to charity, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

'My kids have enough money': Retiree wills $20 million to charity

A retired Singaporean businessman and philanthropist has pledged some $20 million to 10 charities upon his death – with the assurance that his three children “have enough money” for themselves.

According to 8world, Loh Kiong Poot, 79, said he had drawn up his will when he was in his 50s. The sum is currently invested in bonds, but has been pre-designated to 10 beneficiaries.

He explained that he had done so as he believed his three children are all able to live independently.

They won’t be left with nothing, however. 

"Of course, I (will) leave them and my wife some property," Loh said. 

Loh, who worked in the trading industry and retired in 1990 at the age of 47, has been regularly donating to charities since the 90s. 

He donated $3 million to six charities in 2022, and has also donated $500,000 yearly to The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund (STSPMF) since 2018, contributing $2.5 million in total.

"If you have excess money, why would you keep holding on to it? If you can donate and help people, just donate. That's my principle."

Loh Kiong Poot donated $3 million to six charities, including $500,000 to The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund, in 2022.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

In an interview with The Straits Times in 2018, Loh shared how he struggled to make ends meet after quitting school and running away from home at the age of 14, despite growing up in a fairly well-to-do family.

He worked as a grocery shop assistant, living on $20 a day, before setting up his business.

Loh with former Prime Minister of Singapore Goh Chok Tong. PHOTO: 8WORLD

According to 8world, those who know Loh describe him as a simple and frugal man who still travels on economy class flights and maintains a low-profile lifestyle. 

Over the years, Loh’s beneficiaries include Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital, Singapore Chung Hwa Medical Institution, Tzu Chi Foundation, Ren Ci Hospital, SG Enable and Community Chest.

He also donates to orphanages and temples around Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam.