Singaporeans gather to commemorate Mr Lee Kuan Yew on his death anniversary

Singaporeans gather to commemorate Mr Lee Kuan Yew on his death anniversary
PHOTO: Ryan Ho

March 23 marks the first-year death anniversary of former prime minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew where Singaporeans gathered for multiple events that happened today.

AsiaOne went for two significant events in the evening as they were held at Mr Lee's former constituency, Tanjong Pagar GRC, and where residents paid their respects last year, at the Padang.

Tanjong Pagar residents and grassroot volunteers gathered at Tanjong Pagar Community Centre (CC) to pay tribute to Mr Lee. He served as a Member of Parliament (MP) at Tanjong Pagar for more than six decades.

The remembrance showcased six speakers, including two young children who shared their thoughts on Mr Lee as well as their aspirations for Singapore.

Vera Ang Jer Jan, 11, delivered her speech in both Mandarin and English, credited Mr Lee for her ability to converse in both languages due to his bilingual policy. She shared that even though she is part of Generation Z, she has in some way been inspired by Mr Lee.

"He showed me that nothing is impossible on earth because he made Singapore a third world country to a first world country," she beamed.

A Primary Five student at Nan Hua Primary School, Vera had the pleasure of meeting Mr Lee when he was still alive.

She said, "I did see Mr Lee once, in 2014, during a Tanjong Pagar National Day dinner. He had been on a wheelchair," she recalled.

Vera has been a resident of Pinnacle@Duxton since she was five years old and calls the condominium's roof "her happy place".

Tanjong Pagar's grassroot advisors' Ms Indranee Rajah and Mr Chan Chun Sing were also in attendance at the Remembrance.

In her speech, Ms Indranee shared memories of Mr Lee and told Vera that she will install a telescope on top of the Pinnacle sometime later this year since she loves star-gazing on the roof so much. 

"This way, while you have your feet planted firmly on the ground, you can still reach for the stars. I am sure this is something Mr Lee would want all of us to do," she said.

Over at the Padang, Singaporeans gathered to write their well-wishes on electric candles to commemorate the first-year death anniversary of Mr Lee.

However, due to limited resources, the two-hour event happened on the front steps of the National Gallery.

It was organised by Facebook group Silent No More three weeks prior to the event, and self-funded by its members which provided manpower, printing, and refreshments for the event.

Jaromel Gee, 26, founder of the Facebook group said, "we wanted to organise an event that was for the people, by the people".

Watch our Facebook Live broadcast here: 

Lighting our way forward Mr Lee Kuan Yew

Posted by AsiaOne on Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Kelvin Lam, 40, co-organiser to the event said, "People associated Mr Lee with a man who had strong values such as incorruptablity as well as someone with a strong distinction of right and wrong".

He also said that there are challenging times ahead for Singapore and we should learn from the values of Lee Kuan Yew to push us to success.

"If no one similar to Mr Lee steps up, we won't make it to SG100", added Mr Lam.

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