FORMER prime minister Lee Kuan Yew visited The Battle For Merger exhibition, which showcases 12 radio talks he gave in 1961 to convince Singaporeans of the need for merger with Malaya.
During his visit to the exhibition at the National Library on Wednesday, Mr Lee commended the team which put up the exhibition for their thorough research and for presenting this key period for today's audience, said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean.
Mr Teo, who posted a picture on his Facebook page yesterday of Mr Lee's visit, added that "winning the struggle against the communists paved the way for modern non-communist Singapore".
The exhibition is in conjunction with the reprint of The Battle For Merger book, which was released on Oct 9 - the same date as the last of Mr Lee's broadcasts 53 years ago.
The book compiles his radio talks for a younger generation of Singaporeans. In a new message in the book on the genesis of the series of radio talks, Mr Lee said that "if the young read this book and understand what was at stake, why and how we stayed the course, then the reprint would have achieved something".
His talks exposed the communist threat in Singapore in the 1960s and the goal of the communists to capture power. The talks worked: In the 1962 referendum on the merger, 71 per cent of Singaporeans voted in favour of union with Malaya.
Apart from displaying a copy of The Battle For Merger reprint, the National Library exhibition also showcases old documents such as original notes and minutes of meetings penned by communist- linked personalities such as Lim Chin Siong, as well as video accounts from Singaporeans who heard the broadcasts in 1961.
There are also booths for present-day visitors to listen to the recordings of the radio talks.
The exhibition will be at the National Library Building in Victoria Street till Nov 30. After that, it will travel to libraries in Jurong, Ang Mo Kio, Woodlands and Tampines through next March.
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