New chief for the Air Force

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22 Mar 2019 | MILESTONES

New chief for the Air Force

//REPORT by Teo Jing Ting 

//PHOTOS by Kenneth Lin

English 华文

The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has a new chief. On 22 Mar, Brigadier-General (BG) Kelvin Khong was sworn in as the new Chief of Air Force (CAF) at a Change of Command parade held at Paya Lebar Air Base.

He also took over the Command Symbol from Major-General (MG) Mervyn Tan, who has helmed the RSAF since 28 Mar 2016. 

BG Khong, 43, joined the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) in 1995. An F-15SG pilot by training, he was the Commanding Officer of the first F-15SG squadron in Singapore – 149 Squadron. 

Throughout his career in the RSAF, he has held several key appointments including Head Air Plans, Commander Air Combat Command, Head Air Operations and Chief of Staff-Air Staff. He has also played a significant role in the modernisation of the RSAF, and taken part in a range of RSAF operations, exercises and training detachments.

MG Tan joined the SAF in 1990. Under his leadership, the RSAF was transformed to support the Next Generation SAF. This included leading the RSAF to the attainment of full operational capability for the Heron 1 Unmanned Aerial Vehicle and Surface-to-air PYthon-5 and DERby Ground-Based Air Defence system.

The 46-year-old also 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.

Reflecting on his tenure as CAF, MG Tan paid tribute to and thanked the airmen and women of the RSAF for their hard work, commitment and sacrifice. 

He also expressed confidence that what they had accomplished will allow the RSAF to welcome the future from a position of strength, and chart the next bound of transformation into the Next Generation RSAF.

The parade was witnessed by Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General (LG) Melvyn Ong and attended by senior MINDEF and SAF officers, as well as airmen and women from the RSAF.

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