Brigadier-General (BG) Kelvin Khong Boon Leong, currently Chief of Staff-Joint Staff (COS-JS), will take over from Major-General (MG) Mervyn Tan Wei Ming as the Chief of Air Force (CAF) on 22 March 2019. This change is part of the continuing process of leadership renewal in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF).
MG Mervyn Tan Wei Ming, 46, joined the SAF in 1990 and was awarded the SAF Overseas Training Award (Graduating) in 1992. MG Tan has served the SAF with distinction, during which he held several senior command and staff appointments, including Commanding Officer, 121 Squadron; Head Air Plans; Commander Air Defence and Operations Command; and Director Military Intelligence and Chief Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence.
MG Tan has led the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) as CAF since 28 March 2016. Under his leadership, the RSAF has maintained a high level of operational readiness to defend and safeguard Singapore's sovereignty, and achieved mission success across a full spectrum of operations. These included the conduct of air defence operations during the DPRK-USA Singapore Summit as well as the alleged bomb threat aboard the Scoot flight TR634; the participation in the Defeat-ISIS coalition efforts in the Middle East; the contributions to regional and international Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief missions; and the successful conduct of the RSAF50 events to celebrate 50 years of safe skies with fellow Singaporeans.
MG Tan guided the RSAF's transformation to support the Next Generation SAF. He led the attainment of full operational capability for the Heron 1 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and Surface-to-air PYthon-5 and DERby (SPYDER) Ground Based Air Defence system, and positioned the RSAF for the future through the acquisition of the H225M Medium Lift and CH-47F Chinook Heavy Lift Helicopters, A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport and F-35 Joint Strike Fighter platforms. In addition, MG Tan established the Air Warfare Centre to develop game-changing air warfare concepts, set up the RSAF Innovation Office to drive innovation across the organisation and transformed the training and development of the Next Generation Air Warfare Officer vocation. Under his watch, the RSAF also strengthened her defence relations and forged greater cooperation with other air forces and partner countries.
The Ministry of Defence expresses its deep appreciation to MG Mervyn Tan Wei Ming for his sterling leadership and outstanding contributions to MINDEF and the SAF.
The incoming Chief of Air Force, BG Kelvin Khong Boon Leong, 43, joined the SAF in 1995 and was awarded the SAF Overseas Scholarship. BG Khong has served in various command and staff positions in the SAF. An F-15SG pilot by training, BG Khong was the Commanding Officer of the first F-15SG squadron in Singapore – 149 Squadron. He has also held several key appointments in the RSAF, including Head Air Plans; Commander Air Combat Command; Head Air Operations; and Chief of Staff-Air Staff. BG Khong has played a significant role in the modernisation of the RSAF, and also taken part in a range of RSAF operations, exercises and training detachments. BG Khong was the Chairman of the RSAF50 Steering Committee, which oversaw the organisation of multiple events across the year to commemorate the RSAF's Golden Jubilee.