Navy Officer To Become SAF Chief Of Defence Force, Looks Like ‘Descendants Of The Sun’ Oppa

SAF Appoints New Chief Of Defence Force, First Navy Officer To Be Chosen Since Formation

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) has appointed a new Chief of Defence Force (CDF), and if looks could kill, we could be the world’s mightiest military.

Rear-Admiral (RADM) Aaron Beng Yao Cheng will replace the outgoing chief, Lieutenant-General (LG) Melvyn Ong Su Kiat in about a month’s time on 24 Mar.

navy officer saf chief

Source: MINDEF

Not sure about you, but RADM Beng’s dashing looks and youthful disposition certainly remind us of a K-drama oppa, like from the popular ‘Descendants of the Sun’ series.

RADM Beng, who is the current Chief of Navy (CNV), also happens to be the first naval officer to be called to the position.

New Chief of Defence Force oppa joined the SAF in 2000

The change in leadership was announced via a press release by the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) on Wednesday (22 Feb). In the statement, MINDEF said that the changes are “part of the continuing process of leadership renewal in the SAF”.

RADM Beng, 41, joined the SAF in 2000 and was appointed CNV in 2020. Prior to that, he also held other positions in MINDEF and the SAF.

Source: MINDEF

He was the Commanding Officer of the Formidable-class frigate RSS Intrepid, Commanding Officer of the Frigate Squadron, Director of the Defence Policy Office, Fleet Commander, and Chief of Staff – Naval Staff.

Under RADM Beng’s leadership as CNV, the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) pursued organisational changes and capability development to brace itself for the future. He also ensured that the navy remained operationally ready while navigating the Covid-19 pandemic.

Source: RSN on Facebook

Remarkably, he oversaw the safe conduct of the 7th International Maritime Security Conference — the first large-scale maritime conference held since the start of the pandemic.

He will be taking over as CDF from LG Ong on 24 Mar. RADM Sean Wat Jianwen, current Fleet Commander of the RSN, will replace RADM Beng as CNV on 10 Mar.

Current Chief of Defence Force served in SAF for almost 30 years

The outgoing CDF, 47-year-old LG Ong, has reportedly been with the SAF since 1994 and has served the nation for nearly three decades.

Source: MINDEF

During his time in service, he held various senior command and staff appointments:

  • Head of the Joint Plans and Transformation Department
  • Chief Guards Officer
  • Chief of Army.

He has been the CDF since March 2018. As CDF, he played a key role in the SAF’s efforts to enhance Singapore’s peace and security. He led the SAF in high-key security operations and spearheaded its Covid-19 response.

In the press release, MINDEF expressed its deep appreciation to LG Ong for “his sterling leadership and outstanding contributions to the SAF”. According to the Ministry, he will continue serving in the Public Service after he steps down from the SAF.

MS News conveys our heartfelt congratulations to RADM Beng on this appointment, and hopes he can fulfil his role to the best of his abilities.

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Featured image adapted from MINDEF.

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