Queue to Parliament House closes

Queue to Parliament House closes

SINGAPORE - The queue for members of the public to pay their last respects to the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew at Parliament House closed at 8pm today as scheduled.

As at 6pm, 415,000 made it to Parliament House, the Ministry of Communications and Information said in a statement today.

"This is a number which we never really expected to be so large, just the huge outpouring of emotion from Singapore people for Mr Lee," Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean told reporters at the Padang this evening.

"We want to thank everyone who came for their patience and understanding, and their spirit was really a Singapore spirit."

Visiting hours were quickly extended to 24 hours, from 10am to 8pm daily from Wednesday to Saturday, till 8pm today due to overwhelming response on the first day of public mourning.

The queue was temporarily suspended at about 11pm last night before resuming at 6.15am this morning.

The State Funeral Organising Committee said this was to "ensure safety of individuals due to the large crowds and to limit the physical discomfort of the long wait, especially for the elderly and young children".

Those in the queue yesterday had to wait as long as 10 hours to reach Parliament House.

The waiting time as at 6pm today was estimated to be eight hours.

The public can also pay tribute to Mr Lee the People's Association 18 community sites, which are open 24 hours.

They are located at:

1. Tanjong Pagar Community Club, 101 Cantonment Road.

2. Hong Lim Park, next to Telok Ayer Hong Lim Green Community Centre, 20 Upper Pickering Street.

3. Open space @ Bedok Town Centre, in front of 209 New Upper Changi Road, Singapore 460209. The space is outside the Sheng Siong supermarket.

4. Tampines Community Plaza, 10 Tampines Central 1. This is in front of Tampines One Mall.

5. Kovan Hub, 206 Hougang Street 21. This is near the Heartland Mall.

6. Ang Mo Kio Central Stage @ Ang Mo Kio Town Centre. The stage is between Block 712 and Block 709, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8.

7. Hardcourt at Block 749, Yishun Street 72.

8. Woodlands Civic Centre open space, 900 South Woodlands Drive.

9. Hardcourt opposite Choa Chu Kang MRT station, Choa Chu Kang Loop.

10. Canopy (the Pavilion between JCube shopping centre and Jurong Regional Library), Jurong East Central 1.

11. People's Association Headquarters, 9 King George's Avenue

12. Botany Centre, Botanic Gardens, 1 Cluny Road

13. Marina Barrage, 8 Marina Gardens Drive

14. Toa Payoh Central CC Multipurpose Hall, 93 Toa Payoh Central

15. Open area at Blk 442 and Blk 449 Clementi Avenue 3

16. Senja-Cashew Community Club, 101 Bukit Panjang Road

17. Kampong Kembangan Community Club, 5 Lengkong Tiga

18. Sengkang Community Club, 2 Sengkang Square

The state funeral for Mr Lee will be held tomorrow afternoon, starting with the procession to the University Cultural Centre at Kent Ridge Crescent at 12.30pm. There, the funeral service will take place from 2pm to 5.15pm, before the body of Mr Lee is taken on a final journey to Mandai Crematorium for a private cremation service.

The funeral procession and service will be broadcast live on national television and online at www.rememberingleekuanyew.sg.

Sirens will also sound nationwide at about 4pm to signal the start and end of a minute of silence for Mr Lee.

The funeral service will be broadcast at Changi Airport, libraries and hospitals for staff and visitors to participate in the minute of silence.

At the two land checkpoints in Tuas and Woodlands, all checks on persons and vehicles will be stopped to observe the minute of silence. Public buses scheduled to depart from bus interchanges or terminals will be held back. All MRT trains will pull to a stop at stations and open their doors prior to the minute of silence. Announcements will be made at stations and onboard trains.

huizhen@sph.com.sg

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