Mr Lee Kuan Yew makes last trip to Parliament


SINGAPORE - A procession bearing the casket of Singapore's first prime minister Lee Kuan Yew made its way from the Sri Temasek to Parliament House today.

The procession commenced at 9am.

The eight pallbearers who sent Mr Lee off are from the Istana Household and Mr Lee's Private Office, whom have served him loyally over the years.

As the gun carriage left the Istana, crowds gathered at the main gate were heard shouting "I love you" and chanting "Lee Kuan Yew" repeatedly.

Crowds lined Orchard Road from the Istana, past Plaza Singapura, and all the way up to the Asian Civilisations Museum and Parliament House.

Mr Lee's body will lie in state at the Parliament House from Wednesday to Saturday, March 28.

The traditional mounting of the vigil guards during the lying in state period symbolises the highest form of respect accorded to the deceased.

Four uniformed officers will each stand at a corner of the casket with his head bowed, back turned away and ceremonial sword inverted.

The vigil guards will be led by a senior officer, who will stand at the head of the casket facing inwards.

Friends and former colleagues of the late Mr Lee will also hold vigil during the lying in state. They will be joined by representatives from various branches of government, trade unions, grassroots organisations and other groups.

Each vigil group, comprising about 20 people, will hold vigil for 30 minutes.

Live updates:

10.11am: There is a cluster of people along North Bridge Road hoping to join the queue. Roads have been reopened and police are trying to make sure no one gets hurt or injured amid the rush.

10.09am: The public has been let in to Parliament House now. The four-day lying in state period has begun. The crowd outside disperse but spills onto the road as many rush to join the queue.

10.05am: Singaporeans in the queue are starting to file into the Parliament House to pay their last respects to Mr Lee.

10.05am: Mr Lee's grandson Li Yipeng places a portrait of Mr Lee in front of the casket.

10.03am: PM Lee and family pay respects in front of the casket.

9.59am: The casket is now being moved into Parliament House building. Chief of Defence Force Ng Chee Meng, Police Commissioner Hoong Wee Teck, Parliament Speaker Halimah Yacob are also present.

9.58am: PM Lee and family receive the casket.

9.56am: The casket of Mr Lee Kuan Yew is being lifted from the gun carriage.

9.54am: The gun carriage comes to a stop at Parliament House.

9.51am: Eight pallbearers wait at Parliament House. They represent the Government's three branches - legislature, executive, and judiciary.

9.51am: The funeral procession makes its way into driveway of Parliament House as the crowd chants.

9.49am: The funeral procession passes by Supreme Court building.

9.46am: The gun carriage turns into North Bridge Road.

9.45am: The funeral procession passes by Singapore Art Museum as the crowd breaks out in applause.

9.44am: The gun carriage is now at Bras Basah Road. Crowds line both sides of the road to pay respects to Mr Lee.

9.42am: The funeral procession travels from Orchard Road to Parliament House.

9.38am: The funeral procession is now at Istana main gate. The crowd is shouting "I love you".

9.35am: The funeral procession is moving along a 2km route at 25kmh.

9.32am: The gun carriage approaches the Istana main gate. 24 Ceremonial Guards form line of honour.

9.30am: The gun carriage passes the Istana guard house. Three Ceremonial Guards stand in salute.

9.27am: The gun carriage comes to a stop. A bag piper from the Singapore Gurkha Contingent plays Auld Lang Syne.

9.26am: At the lawn, 12 Istana landscape technicians, horticulturalists line up along the garden entrance.

9.23am: The gun carriage moves towards the Istana main building, will pass by The Lawn, an English garden.

9.21am: The funeral procession is led by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Eight pallbearers behind the gun carriage comprise Mr Lee's Istana staff.

9.18am: The Singapore Armed Forces Band is playing Beethoven Funeral March No.1 as foot procession commences.

9.16am: The 70m foot procession from Sri Temasek at the Istana has begun.

9.10am: The casket is being placed on the gun carriage.

9.09am: The Coffin Bearer Party transfers the casket of Mr Lee.

9.06am: The funeral procession has begun. The casket of Mr Lee Kuan Yew is being carried out of Sri Temasek at the Istana.

Sending off from Sri Temasek

A group of personal staff who have served and worked closely with Mr Lee at various points in his life will send him off from Sri Temasek.

The eight pallbearers are from the Istana Household and Mr Lee's Private Office. These eight represent the many who served him loyally over the years, including in the most tumultuous of times.

Representing the Istana Household staff are:

Mrs Foo Su Bang, the Istana Comptroller who is in charge of the Istana Household. Her duties included preparing for courtesy calls on Mr Lee;

Istana Butlers, Mr Amran Bin Ghani and Mr Ismail Bin Rahim, who took care of Mr Lee's daily needs while he worked at the Istana, and served during the many receptions he hosted;

Mr Wong Shang Hoon, a chef who has been with the Istana since 1963, serving almost throughout Mr Lee's time in government.

Representing Mr Lee's Private Office are two former Principal Private Secretaries: First, Mr Lim Siong Guan, Mr Lee's first Principal Private Secretary and former Head of the Civil Service.

Second, Mr Chee Hong Tat, Mr Lee's last Principal Private Secretary before he stepped down as Minister Mentor, and currently Second Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Also serving as pallbearers are two other long-serving members of his Private Office: Ms Wong Lin Hoe, one of Mr Lee's faithful Private Secretaries; and Madam Yeong Yoon Ying, Mr Lee's loyal Press Secretary since 1993.

Receiving at Parliament House

The eight pallbearers receiving the casket of the former Prime Minister at Parliament House represent the three branches of our government: the Executive, the Legislative and the Judiciary.

The pallbearers embody the varied responsibilities of each arm of our government, including grassroots organisations.

Representing the Legislature are two members of the Parliament Secretariat: First, Mr A Palaniappan, who has provided simultaneous translation for parliamentary sittings and other events such as the National Day Rally since Mr Lee's days as Prime Minister;

Second, Ms Owyong Chuen Song, a long-serving member of the Official Reports Department which compiles the verbatim official records of parliamentary proceedings.

Representing the Executive are three public servants:

Mr Benny Lim, concurrently Permanent Secretary (National Development), Permanent Secretary (National Security and Intelligence Coordination) and Permanent Secretary (Prime Minister's Office);

Mr Aaron Maniam, a Lee Kuan Yew Postgraduate Scholarship recipient, and currently Director of Industry Division at the Ministry of Trade and Industry; and Mr Stanly Tan Seng Chuan, a Senior Constituency Manager with the Buona Vista Constituency Office.

Finally, representing the Judiciary are:

Mr See Kee Oon, Presiding Judge of the State Courts of Singapore, and a Judicial Commissioner of the Supreme Court;

Madam Masayu Norashikin, a District Judge of the Family Justice Courts; and Ms Marina Wang Meng Si, a Mandarin interpreter at the Supreme Court of Singapore.

Lying in state at Parliament House

The traditional mounting of the vigil guards during the lying in state period symbolises the highest form of respect accorded to the deceased.

It comprises four uniformed officers each standing at a corner of the casket with his head bowed, back turned away and ceremonial sword inverted.

The vigil guards will be led by a senior officer, who will stand at the head of the casket facing inwards.

The Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant-General Ng Chee Meng; Chief of Army (COA), Major-General Perry Lim; Chief of Navy (CNV), Rear-Admiral Lai Chung Han; Chief of Air Force (CAF), Major-General Hoo Cher Mou; and Chief of Staff, Joint Staff, Brigadier-General Chia Choon Hoong will perform the first vigil guard duties in the morning of 25 Mar from 9.45 a.m. to 10.15 a.m.

That same afternoon, the Commissioner of Police will lead senior officers from the Singapore Police Force in performing vigil guard duties. On subsequent days, COA, CNV and CAF will lead their respective Services in performing the vigil guard duties.

Friends and former colleagues of the late Mr Lee will also hold vigil in his memory during the lying in state at Parliament House.

They will be joined by representatives from various branches of government, trade unions, grassroots organisations and other groups, a reflection of his extensive and diverse contributions to nation-building.

Each vigil group, comprising about 20 persons, will hold vigil for 30 minutes. There will be a break of either 30 minutes or an hour between the vigil groups.

 Time (hrs) Vigil Group Names
 1130 - 1200  Close friends and personal staff

Ong Beng Seng

Fu Christine

Stephen Lee Ching Yen

Irene Lee Oi Ling

Liew Mun Leong

Peter Seah Lim Huat

Mylene Tan Siew Toh

Cheng Wai Keong

Helen Cheng

Lim Teck Kiat

Yeong Yoon Ying

Wong Lin Hoe

Florence Tan (Ler Chay Keng)

Linda Chia May San

Tan Lai Kheng

Jerry Tan

Lee Seow Hiang

Raymond Pay Hock Seng

Alan Chang Tat Seng

Tan Chee Keong

1400 - 1430Former Principal Private Secretaries and personal staffAndrew Tan Kok Kiong

Chee Hong Tat

Leo Yip

Koh Kiang Chay

Loh Hock Teck

Moses Lee Kim Poo

Ho Meng Kit

Alan Chan Heng Loon

Robert Lim

Cheong Cheng Hoon

Anthony Tan Kang Uei

Lilian Ho Li Min

Keith Lee Kee Kae

Loo Liang Chye

Soon Hong Yee

Yeo Heng Giap

Chester Lim Zhi Quan

Lee Koon San

Tan Kang Pin

Bek Hua Earng

1530 - 1600Old Guard

Chng Jit Koon

Ho Kah Leong

Hwang Soo Jin

Jek Yeun Thong

Lau Ping Sum

Lee Khoon Choy

Lim Soo Peng

Mahmud Awang

Ng Kah Ting

Ong Pang Boon

P Selvadurai

Phua Bah Lee

S Vasoo

Tan HH Augustine

Tang See Chim

Teong Eng Siong

Yeo Toon Chia

1700 - 1730Tanjong Pagar grassrootsHo Nai Chuen, PBM

Ang Ngoh Goh Ho Freddy, PBM

Lim Cheng Kheng, PBM

Chow Yuet Foon Rita, PBM

Ganesan S/O Kulandai, PBM

Tan Eng Loke, PBM

Kho Li Lian

Wong Tai Ping, PBM

Choo Wye Foo, PBM

Gopala Krishnan, PBM

Ho Yuet Meng Irene, PBM

Hui Beng Hong, PBM

Kan Yuet Yun Michael, PBM

Kee Siew Lan Katherine, PBM

Tan Teck Boh, Philip, PBM

Tham Lai Kuan, PBM

Rizayati Begal Malawad

Lim Chien Yuen

Ng Kim Chuan

Chua Gim Song, BBM

1830 - 1900National Trades Union Congress

Diana Chia

Lim Swee Say

Lim Kuang Beng

Nora Kang

K Karthikeyan

Edwin Lye

Chan Chun Sing

Heng Chee How

Joanne Cham Hui Fong

Tan Hock Soon

Lim Boon Heng

John De Payva

Mahmud Awang

Oscar Oliveiro

Tan Soon Yam

Edwin Netto

Varukatty Mohd

Teo Yock Ngee

Cyrille Tan

Thomas Tay

 1930 - 2000 People's Action Party

Tan Lee Jee

Victor Lye

Tay Bok Hock, Louis

Ong Say Kiat, Jason

Ng Ai Lee, Janica

Chua Eng Leong

Lee Chay Eng, Victor

Mun Kok Hong, Steven

Tan Siang Hui

Foo Doon Chin, Michael

Chua Chong Meng, Vincent

Lim Moh Tin, Rosemary

Shaw Kar Seng, Bob

Tong Chwee Chong, Jeffrey

Tan Poh Hua

Yeong Wai Teck

Goh Peng Tong

Chia Chong Peow

Tan Yan Boon, Alex

Teh Seng Lee, Bobby

klim@sph.com.sg