31/03/2022

The Most Touristy Zi Char In Chinatown


Chinatown Seafood Restaurant (CSR) is a zi char eatery opposite Chinatown Heritage Centre. If you work in Chinatown or walk through Pagoda street on your way to the CBD, you’ve probably noticed the place. It’s one of the few zi char restaurants in Singapore populated almost exclusively by Caucasian tourists.

Despite a growing resemblance to Christmas hams, they continue to lounge outdoors, nursing Tiger Beers as if the malt might cure their sunburns. You really have to admire their devotion to the Church Of Al Fresco. Most of the PRCs have long since fled. They sit wilting in the shade, coconut in one hand and WeChat in the other.

I walk past CSR every day, but the sight of tourists eating dim sum, with tiger beer and a side of Singapore Noodles never fails to make me smile. I am reminded—ungenerously—of ‘Paella’ Cafes in Barcelona which also serve Burgers, and of the Phuket eateries which survive off Singha sales. After six months of watching, my curiosity finally got the better of me. I relented and went in. What exactly are the tourists eating? Is it any good?

30/03/2022

To Wax or not to Wax

Why cleaning your ears might do more harm than good

Hands up, if you enjoy scraping out your ears and seeing the amount of wax extricated. I’ll admit, I belong to the club, even though I know better than to insert anything into my ears.

There’s something relaxing about the sensation when you gently drag a scraper down the ear canal. Like a light massage for your ears, if you will, or an ASMR experience that sends tingles up and down your spine.

"It's like scratching an itch," said Dr Lim Keng Hua, consultant ear, nose and throat surgeon from Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre’s Ear Nose Throat, Head & Neck Surgery – Singapore ENT Specialist Clinic. "The more you scratch, the itchier and more satisfying it feels." Even more satisfying is seeing what the scraper scoops out. And I’m sure I’m not alone in this.


A constant ringing in your ears
Why do some people hear it, is it normal? That phantom noise is called tinnitus and experts say it may worsen with age. Here’s what you can do to prevent that

Do you sometimes hear a ringing, buzzing, humming or hissing that no one else seems to be bothered by? It may be constant or it may come and go. The noise can be so loud that it interferes with your ability to concentrate or hear the sounds around you.

As enigmatic and frustrating as it is, this phantom sound is very real and it is what the experts call tinnitus.

“It appears to affect those aged 40 to 55 years most,” said Joyce Lim, a senior tinnitus counsellor at Changi General Hospital (CGH). Globally, it affects 40 per cent of the population and like hearing loss, tinnitus increases with age.


Clogged Ears, Pain & Infection
How to Properly Clean Your Ears

If your ears are bothering you and you’re ready to grab a cotton swab — think again. Cotton swabs condense and impact earwax deeper into the ear canal — and you may be risking your hearing each time you reach for a swab. In fact, many do-it-yourself ear-cleaning methods do more harm than good. Although unpleasant, earwax has nothing to do with personal hygiene and the ear canal naturally cleanses itself through your body’s everyday movements.

Here are a few simple tips to help you properly clean ears without damaging this delicate sense organ:
  • Dampen a soft washcloth with warm water to clean the outside of your ear.
  • Clean the outside of your ear with cotton balls, but do not insert them into your ear canal.
  • Use an earwax softener to make removal easier.
  • Ask your doctor’s office to remove wax during your regular exam.
If you must remove earwax, remember these safety tips:
  • Do not clean your ears with bobby pins, twisted napkin corners, or other long pointed objects.
  • Do not insert cotton balls or cotton swabs into the ear canal. They will merely push the wax deeper into the ear canal, possibly causing a blockage.
  • Do not use ear candles. The Food and Drug Administration issued a public warning in 2010 that the use of ear candles can lead to serious injuries.

29/03/2022

COVID-19: To Mask or not to Mask

Update 29 Aug 2022: Wearing a mask optional from 29 Aug 2022

From Monday (Aug 29), people in Singapore will not be required to wear a mask except on public transport and in healthcare facilities, announced Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong on Wednesday (Aug 24).

Masks will still have to be worn on transport modes such as the MRT, LRT and public buses, as well as in indoor public transport facilities like boarding areas at bus interchanges and MRT platforms, said Mr Wong, speaking at a press conference held by the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force.

But they will not be required at airports, naturally ventilated bus interchanges and in the retail areas of bus interchanges, MRT and LRT stations. Masks will be optional on private transport modes such as taxis, school buses and private bus services, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) in a separate press release on Wednesday. 


Masks optional outdoors starting today 29 Mar 2022

Singapore will see its most significant easing of measures in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic from Tuesday (Mar 29). For two years, masks were the norm - indoors, outdoors, even during exercise.

Last week, however, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced the easing of a raft of measures in “a major step towards living with COVID-19”, but stopped short of a complete opening up. From tomorrow, people will be able to remove their masks when outdoors. Individuals can gather and dine-in at restaurants in groups of up to 10 people. More people will see their colleagues in the office, and live performances will return. 

Places that are sheltered but with open access will generally be regarded as outdoor areas. These include HDB void decks, bus stops, open-air sheltered walkways and bridges, as well as parks, fields and nature trails. The 1m safe distancing rule will still be required in all mask-off environments.


Where can you go without a mask in Singapore: What's considered indoor and outdoor settings
Masks will no longer be mandatory in outdoor settings from March 29, but indoors, masks-wearing will remain mandatory

Masks will no longer be mandatory in outdoor settings from Tuesday (March 29). This is because the risk of outdoor transmission is significantly lower, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who on Thursday announced the easing of Covid-19 measures as the Omicron wave subsides. But indoors, mask wearing will remain mandatory.

Safe distancing requirements will still be maintained in mask-off settings to minimise transmission, which means groups must maintain the 1m distance. The Ministry of Health also encourages people to wear masks even when outdoors for personal protection and to protect others, especially in crowded areas.

Indoor places refer to all buildings or places with clearly defined entrances and exits, such as office buildings, shopping malls, public transport and hawker centres and coffee shops. Places which are sheltered but with open access generally, such as HDB void decks, HDB corridors, retail block walkways, bus stops, and naturally ventilated bus interchanges will be regarded as outdoor areas.



3 scenarios to show you when to put on and take off your mask
Scenario 1: Going from home to the nearby coffee shop
Scenario 2: Taking a bus to the park
Scenario 3: Taking the train to a shopping mall

Wearing masks outdoors will be optional from Tuesday (March 29), but wearing masks indoors will continue to be mandatory, the multi-ministry task force on Covid-19 announced on Thursday.

But which areas qualify as outdoors and which indoors? The Ministry of Health defines areas such as offices, schools, malls and trains as indoors, while parks and open-air sheltered bridges are outdoors.

It added that while mask-wearing outdoors will soon be optional, people are encouraged to continue wearing their masks for personal protection and to protect others, especially in crowded areas.



Concise Guide to What is Considered Indoors & Outdoors by MOH

If you’re not counting down the hours and minutes to 29 March after PM Lee’s address today, are you even living in Singapore? Jokes aside, I’m sure everyone’s aware of the masks-off-when-you’re-outdoors rule that will be kicking in from next Tuesday (29 March) onwards.

But wait ah … What counts as outdoors? If you’re as confused as I was regarding what venues count as outdoor venues, don’t worry, because I’ve got you covered:
  • Indoor Venues - Although it might be easy to assume that by “indoor” the government means “places with air-conditioning”, that’s not the case. According to the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) guidelines, “indoor venues” include the obvious areas such as within office buildings, shopping malls, libraries and lifts.
  • Outdoor Venues - I don’t think I’ve been more excited to read a list before. Based on the same guidelines, outdoor venues include the void decks of HDB blocks, the walkways along HDB walkways and fivefoot ways. Open-air sheltered walkways and bridges also count as outdoor areas.


“Stop releasing half-baked guidelines” — Netizens remain confused about “indoor” “outdoor” and “only when eating” mask rules
Even a day before the rules are set to be implemented, netizens are still voicing their concern over what some see as an unclear and not-entirely-effective set of rules

In response to yet another news article clarifying the new set of safety measures regarding the use of facemasks against the spread of Covid-19, netizens are still expressing their confusion over exceptions such as being indoors, outdoors, or even the cases where eating is a special case. Others have questioned the effectiveness of the rules.

On Thursday (March 24) PM Lee announced that the nation would put a new set of safety measures in place starting on Tuesday (March 19.) Though mask donning will be optional outdoors, they will still be mandatory indoors. Aside from this, the maximum capacity of group gatherings and events has been increased. However, the rules do not seem to be as black and white as they sound.

In recent news, an entire news forum thread was dedicated to questions, clarifications, and even reactions concerning the new set of rules. While some more introverted Singaporeans merely expressed their lack of excitement to participate in gatherings, others raised questions such as what exactly is considered an “indoor” or an “outdoor” venue. Even a day before the rules are set to be implemented, netizens are still voicing their concern over what some see as an unclear and not-entirely-effective set of rules. In response to a published guide for Singaporeans, netizens shared their two cents.


TikTok Video Shows Hassle Of Indoor & Outdoor Mask Rules

Singaporeans everywhere rejoiced the second mask-wearing policies were relaxed from 29 Mar onwards. In celebration of no longer needing our masks outdoors, a parody on TikTok provides us with a hilarious outlook on how to abide by this new regulation.

Within the video, the OP accurately captures the struggle of constantly needing to put a mask off and on. Netizens can relate to the parody, with some expressing their gratitude for the policy due to the freedom given to Singaporeans.

On 24 Mar, PM Lee announced in his national address that Singaporeans would be able to take their masks off while outdoors. The policy will come into effect from today (29 Mar). The differentiation between which situations require a mask and which do not has invited some confusion. A TikTok user decided to make a parody to explain the policy.


Better safe than sorry: People in S'pore share why they still wear masks outdoors

People in Singapore are now allowed to remove their masks when they are outdoors. When the relaxed Covid-19 rules kicked in at 12am on Tuesday (Mar. 29, 2022), the situation on the ground was relatively quiet, with no large crowds of unmasked people in sight.

Most people prefer to wear their masks while outdoors. Mothership decided to hit the streets again on Mar. 29 morning and afternoon to see if things remained the same.

We went down to Tampines, Pasir Ris, and Simei in the morning, as well as Rochor, Bugis, Telok Ayer, and Raffles Place in the afternoon. Nearly everyone outdoors in these areas were still wearing their masks.


Ground chatter: Many still prefer to mask up outdoors even on day one of new rules
In response to a post showing photos of maskless people outdoors, many left comments explaining why they still choose to wear them even in open-air venues

At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, everyone dreamed of the day it would be deemed safe enough to take them off. However, two years later, when countries like Singapore are beginning to ease the safety measures as they gain ground in the battle against Covid-19, people are actually saying they prefer to wear their masks even when outdoors.

On Tuesday (March 29), Singapore implemented a modified set of safety measures against Covid-19. One of the modifications to the rules is that it is now optional to wear a mask outdoors. Though at the beginning of the pandemic, mask-wearing was something everyone had to get used to, it seems to have become a part of everyday life for many–so much so that on the first day that people were no longer obligated to don a facemask outdoors, many expressed their strong preference for keeping their masks on.

In response to a post showing photos of maskless people outdoors, many left comments explaining why they still choose to wear them even in open-air venues. For some, it is a matter of consideration for others, such as members of their family or even the more vulnerable in society such as the elderly and children. For others, it is the sense of security they feel knowing that the risk of transmission is brought even lower with a facemask. A few even reported that they saw a lot of people wearing masks outdoors.


Jamus Lim says S’pore should go maskless outdoors because S’poreans sian of wearing mask liao

Our Jamus Lim oppa 不愧 (no doubt) is drink ang moh water one. Even his thinking also so ang moh style leh. In a Facebook post on 21 September, Workers’ Party Jamus Lim boldly calls for mask-wearing to be eased outdoors.

To make his point, he listed 3 reasons:
  • Transmission rates are “far lower” outdoors than indoors - Jamus Lim said that after two years of living with the virus, our understanding of the virus has shown that transmission rates are far lower outdoors, as opposed to indoors. While he acknowledges that the delta variant is very powerful and may get passed around outdoors, he also added that wearing masks alone won’t be able to stop the spread of the delta variant anyway.
  • Keeping the mask on constantly is stifling - He then reasoned that keeping mask on constantly is stifling in our hot and humid climate, especially for people who work outdoors (like cleaners and gardeners), who don’t have the “exercising” excuse to unmask.
  • People sian of wearing mask liao - Jamus oppa also said that the reason why people are ripping their masks off once indoors is also because everyone is sian of wearing masks liao. He then explained his point using workers who unmask themselves in smaller meeting rooms and offices as example. “There are clear signs of mask fatigue. But this is precisely the wrong way round. If we had to choose between indoor and outdoor masking, the former is clearly preferred, because risks of infection indoors are much higher,” he said.



One of the activities I’ll miss most as from our time in the U.S. is our walks at a nearby park. In addition to the rolling hills, cool morning air, and family time, is the freedom to keep our masks off while outdoors. Masks have been a controversial public policy in Singapore. We started with a position that masks were unnecessary, then belatedly went on a strict mask mandate. Violators have faced persecution and deportation (along with public consternation). Excess caution was probably warranted in the earlier part of the COVID-19 pandemic, given our state of knowledge at the time. But two years on, our understanding of the disease has evolved significantly.

One development has been the far lower transmission rates of COVID-19 outdoors, as opposed to indoors. Indeed, a cross-country systematic review has only one recorded time (in Singapore, no less) where the indoor setting has been linked to cluster formation (http://doi.org/10.12688/wellcomeopenres.15889.2). There is now some emerging evidence that outdoor transmission is also possible with the delta variant. But then again, it seems like masks alone are insufficient to fully inhibit delta’s spread, as shown by our now-infamous market vegetable study.

In my view, this makes a strong behavioral case for relaxing the mask mandate outdoors. In an ideal world, folks would keep masks on all the time, of course, except perhaps when in the presence of those living in the same household. But in reality, keeping the mask on constantly is stifling, and all the more so in our hot and humid climate. This is especially so for those who work outdoors (like cleaners and gardeners), who don’t have the “exercising” excuse to unmask. Not only that, it often leads to people ripping their masks off once indoors, to obtain some relief. I’m sure we all know of coworkers who unmask, especially in smaller meeting rooms and offices. There are clear signs of mask fatigue. But this is precisely the wrong way round. If we had to choose between indoor and outdoor masking, the former is clearly preferred, because risks of infection indoors are much higher. We aren’t machines, and public health policy should ultimately be sustainable.


‘Badge Lady’ Gets 16 Weeks’ Jail For Not Wearing Mask At MBS & Public Places
As part of Covid-19 measures, wearing a mask when outside is compulsory at all times except when eating and drinking.

One lady who was seen not wearing a mask at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) was sentenced to jail on Monday (6 Sep).

Channel NewsAsia (CNA) reports that Phoon Chiu Yoke, 54, was given 16 weeks of jail for 9 charges of Covid-19 breaches after she pleaded guilty.



Traditional Chinese medicines beneficial in treatment of COVID-19 - WHO

Traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs) are beneficial in the treatment of COVID-19, particularly mild-to-moderate cases, according to a new report released by the World Health Organization. It also encourages member states to consider the potential use of TCM for the management of COVID-19 in the context of their health care systems and regulatory frameworks.

The report came in late March after a WHO Expert Meeting on Evaluation of TCMs in the Treatment of COVID-19 was held virtually from February 28 to March 2. The meeting gathered 21 international experts from the six WHO regions to consider three reports, including on clinical service, research and evidence-based evaluation provided by national expert groups in China. According to the WHO report, there are also promising data to suggest that TCM is beneficial in reducing the risk of progression from mild-to-moderate cases to severe COVID-19. For mild-to-moderate cases, the report noted there is encouraging evidence that the studied TCMs, when administered as add-on interventions to conventional treatment, may shorten the time for viral clearance, resolution of clinical symptoms and length of hospital stay when compared to conventional treatment alone.

Meanwhile, experts hold that the studied TCM interventions, given in addition to conventional treatment, were well tolerated and have a safety profile that is comparable to that of conventional treatment alone. There is also encouraging evidence that early application of TCM may result in better clinical outcomes for patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19, the report added. Based on the findings, the report recommends that the WHO share the outcomes of the meeting with member states in a timely manner, given the evolving nature of COVID-19 globally.


COVID-19: To Boost or not to Boost
Is It Time for Yet Another COVID Booster?

Will springtime be booster time - again? The first COVID-19 booster shot is now in the rearview mirror for millions of Americans - for the 28% who got it, at least - but new data finds it’s less effective after about 4 months. The CDC has already recommended a second booster for immunocompromised people.

So, is the next logical step another booster for every other adult? The consensus among public health officials seems to be: Not so fast. At the White House COVID-19 briefing Wednesday, chief White House medical adviser Anthony Fauci, MD, focused on the question of the hour. Citing data, he said that ''a single booster shot continues to provide high-level protection against severe disease caused by Omicron" in people who are not immunocompromised.

Fauci pointed to CDC research that found vaccine effectiveness after two doses of mRNA vaccines - either Moderna or Pfizer - drops to 58% after 4-5 months. After a booster dose, the vaccine is 91% effective, at first, at preventing hospitalizations. But that drops to 78% at months 4 to 5. "Nonetheless, the level of 78 [%] is still a good protective area," Fauci said. "The future requirement for an additional boost, or a fourth shot for mRNA or a third shot for [Johnson & Johnson], is being very carefully monitored in real time," he said, adding that recommendations will be updated as needed.

related:
Singapore urges calm after panic buying hits supermarkets
Singapore reports its first cases of local COVID-19 transmission
Singapore confirms cases of COVID-19 Virus

28/03/2022

Some of the oldest Chinese temples in Singapore

Built in the early tumultuous years
Clockwise from top left: Ying Fo Fui Kun temple, Lian Shan Shuan Lin Monastery, Thian Hock Keng temple and Fuk Tak Chi temple. Image: Coconuts

A tiny country bursting with diverse cultures, Singapore is home to more than 1,000 Taoist and Buddhist temples mainly dedicated to its large Chinese community, with one of the earliest built not long after the British established a port here in the early 1800s.

The Fuk Tak Chi temple, for example, was built in the 1820s by a group of Cantonese and Hakka-speaking Chinese settlers in the middle of what is now Singapore’s business district. The temple’s signature architectural style, which includes floral roof motifs, is reminiscent of temples in Fujian, China, and stands out among the row of shophouses along Telok Ayer Street near Chinatown.

Taken together, the city’s tapestry of Chinese temples are easily mistaken for a mismatched and motley collection of competing styles. But look deeper and find they speak to the identities of those who made Singapore home, bringing their architecture and preferences with them to be shaped by a common community sometimes at odds with itself. We talked to a temple guru about their history, why they differ architecturally, how they came to be, and where to find them today.

25/03/2022

World's tallest wooden pagoda faces repair difficulty


In north China's Shanxi Province stands an almost 1,000-year-old wooden pagoda, the Sakyamuni Pagoda of the Fogong Temple, also known as the Yingxian Wooden Pagoda in Yingxian County. The ravages of time have caused the pagoda to tilt. Conservationists are now figuring out how to right it, and it's not as easy as it seems.

The pagoda was built in 1056, during the Liao Dynasty (907-1125), which was founded by the nomadic Khitan and ruled the northern part of China. It's the world's oldest and tallest wooden structure, around 66 meters high, equal to a 23-story building today. Over the past nine centuries, it has survived several earthquakes and even artillery attacks. However, if you look closer, you will see that the pagoda is tilted. A column on the second floor on its southwest side leans by as much as 57 centimeters.

In the 1930s, the pagoda was placed under maintenance. The mud walls and diagonal bracings in them were replaced with the present wooden doors and windows. Experts say the move reduced the structure's stability. This, plus shocks from bombings in the past wars, has caused the pagoda to tilt to one side. The last structural reinforcement was carried out from the 1970s to the 1980s. In 2002, experts created four repair plans, but they were all shelved. As a consequence, the pagoda slowly continues to tilt.

24/03/2022

Guinness World Records: World's Largest Mouth


Meet the woman whose record-breaking mouth gape went viral on TikTok

If you’re ever scrolling through TikTok and encounter a woman with style, a sense of humor, and an incredibly large mouth, you’ve most likely stumbled upon Guinness World Records title holder Samantha Ramsdell. The 31-year-old Connecticut resident is every dentist’s dream. With a larger-than-life mouth that stretches at a massive 6.52 cm, she’s been confirmed for having the world’s largest mouth gape (female) after going viral on TikTok for her sizeable jaw. 

According to Sam, “the children of TikTok” were convinced she had a world record mouth after seeing her stretch it in one of her videos and encouraged her to go after the record. Although many online users were certain she had the record, there was only one way to verify it officially. So recently we met Sam in her local dentist’s office in South Norwalk, Connecticut, USA with an official adjudicator present to measure her gape for the Guinness World Records title.

Dr. Elke Cheung used digital calipers to calculate the length and width of Sam’s mouth to determine its maximum stretch. After taking all measurements, adjudicator Spencer Cammarano averaged the data to confirm the final record-breaking total.  



442 Following
1.7M Followers
47.5M Likes
No, It’s not a filter.
IG: @SamRamsdell5


American woman bullied for her big mouth turns it into TikTok stardom & Guinness World Record

Described by the record keeper as being the owner of "every dentist's dream", the 31-year-old first garnered attention on TikTok, where she used her incredibly large mouth for comedic effect.

Her account — which at the time of writing has over 1.7 million followers — features videos of her shovelling large portions of food into her mouth or generally just opening it in an extremely wide fashion.

The Connecticut, United States, resident told Guinness that it was followers on TikTok who had convinced her that her mouth might be of world record quality. That led her to getting it officially verified. The measuring process was conducted by a local dentist with digital callipers and under the watchful eye of an official Guinness adjudicator.

23/03/2022

Remembering Lee Kuan Yew 2022


Update 16 Sep 2023: Lee Kuan Yew In His Own Words

Singapore's founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew was a man equally at home whipping up a crowd at a rally or commanding attention on the international stage. Known for his acumen, foresight and wit, he held his own with the brightest minds and most powerful leaders and laid the foundation for the country's success.

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth on Sep 16, CNA looks back at 10 of his more memorable quotes that were synonymous with the country's milestones and development:
  • On separating from Malaysia - For me, it is a moment of anguish because all my life ... You see, the whole of my adult life ... I have believed in Malaysian merger and the unity of these two territories.
  • On taking a long-term view for Singapore - I am calculating not in terms of the next election ... I am calculating in terms of the next generation; in terms of the next 100 years; in terms of eternity.
  • On how Singaporeans are not a people who can be bullied - You know, some people think: Oh well you know, we are a small place - they can put the screws on us. It is not so easy. We are a small place in size yes, geography.
  • On how governing Singapore is not simply a game - Whoever governs Singapore must have that iron in him or give it up. This is not a game of cards. This is your life and mine.
  • On micromanaging people's private lives - I am accused often of interfering in private lives of citizens. And I say without the slightest remorse that we wouldn't be here, we would not have made the economic progress if we had not intervened on very personal matters
  • On what it takes to be a good minister - Remember this: Good ministers are not just those who kiss babies and smile and have dialogue sessions; you can have endless sessions, it's very good, you keep on listening and so on.
  • On how political leaders are judged - Political leaders are judged, first, by how effectively they have exercised their authority in the interests of their people.
  • On being an ardent advocate for Singapore's success - Even from my sickbed, even if you are going to lower me into the grave and I feel that something is going wrong, I will get up.
  • On saving and investing for a rainy day - They say we got enormous reserves. Yes, we do. But, you know, a few years of a recession, an economic setback, and all that will suddenly be depleted.
  • On what he cherished most - I cannot say I planned my life. That's why I feel life is a great adventure - exciting, unpredictable, and at times exhilarating and sometimes excruciating.

Lee Kuan Yew Doppelganger Spotted At Coffee Shop On 18 May
Resemblance Leaves Internet Shook

The term doppelganger is used to describe someone who is a spitting image of another, although they are entirely biologically unrelated. While it’s incredibly rare to meet one in person, it’s not entirely impossible, as seen in this video posted on 18 May.

In the clip, a man resembling the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew chows down on a meal at a coffee shop. Perhaps it’s the camera’s angle, but the uncanny resemblance left the Internet shook. The video, which a Facebook user shared in the Singapore Incidents group, left commenters reeling from laughter, and they spared no expense when cracking jokes.

One joked that the man was the late Mr Lee’s body double. He had probably lost his job since the Minister Mentor (MM)’s passing. With the latest release of the CDC vouchers, another person suggested that he might be taking the opportunity to use them to pay for his lunch. Considering how eerie it must be to see the likes of someone who has passed, a Facebook user said the OP should count his lucky stars that the encounter happened in broad daylight.


Iving Iving May 18

Look like LKY having his meal !!!


LHL welcome PM of Singapore


Remembering Lee Kuan Yew 2020
Wei Ling and Hsien Yang’s are the younger siblings of Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Kwa is a maternal cousin of the Lees

Dr Lee Wei Ling and Lee Hsien Yang, trustees and executors of the late Lee Kuan Yew’s estate, have applied for an order against the Law Society to convene a Disciplinary Tribunal in relation to their father’s former lawyer Kwa Kim Li. According to court documents obtained by Yahoo News Singapore, the two Lee siblings filed the application on 21 September last year and a pre-trial conference was scheduled for 6 October. Another in-chambers hearing took place on Monday (1 February) over the case.

The duo applied for the order under section 96(1) of the Legal Profession Act, and had sought for the Law Society to be directed to apply to the Chief Justice for the appointment of a Disciplinary Tribunal for a formal investigation into Kwa’s conduct. This involves three complaints relating to Kwa that were made by the siblings, and which were investigated by an Inquiry Committee in 2019.

Kwa is managing partner of Lee and Lee, which was founded in 1955 by the late Lee. Between 20 August 2011 and 2 November 2012, she had prepared six of the late Lee’s wills. Dr Lee had previously accused Kwa of “lying” about the latter’s supposed non-involvement in the events that led to her father’s 2013 will.


Remembering Lee Kuan Yew 2016
When Lee Kuan Yew passed, he was apparently no longer just a great man; in the eyes of many, he had become a perfect man too

I have no doubt that Singaporeans and many people around the world felt genuine, emotional stirrings at the death of this giant, but that it was so short-lived makes one wonder. I suppose we can't expect people to be writing eulogies to him every day. We all know that life goes on. However, I believe that if you asked the people who had either strongly negative or neutral feelings, or those who could rationalise how they felt about his life and passing, the conviction of their sentiments would be the same now as they have been for years and will be for years to come.

So what of the seven-day mourners? Was it a knee-jerk reaction? Was it that people didn't expect to feel as much as they did when he left us? Or was it just that many had never thought about it before and never weighed the importance of this man in our history and future until he was gone? How much of it stemmed from pure ignorance?

One of the main things that struck me was the disgust with which people who had anything other than a kind word to say about him were treated. They were called ungrateful and disrespectful. They weren't allowed their own opinions — God forbid any judgements — or their own parting words to a man they had a different relationship with. When Lee Kuan Yew passed, he was apparently no longer just a great man; in the eyes of many, he had become a perfect man too.



"Singapore really was a venture then. Together with the pioneer leaders, he didn’t just raise funds, he mobilised a whole people. We were a people who had little else besides our spirit, but our pioneers energised us, gave us the faith, strength and vision to draw together as one and move forward in the same direction. In doing so, we showed the world that we are a people who can get things done, and we built something special and enduring – our Singapore.

I don't think Mr Lee would want us to grieve over his passing. I think he would expect us to keep that spirit alive, and carry on with the work of building this nation. He would hope that all of us continue to stay united and think long term; be courageous and bold to find new ways and to try and try again until we succeed; and to leave no one behind, and always do our best for one another and for Singapore."


Remembering Lee Kuan Yew
Photograph by Tara Sosrowardoyo, National Museum of Singapore Collection

Mr Lee Kuan Yew died on March 23, 2015 at the age of 91. In his long years as Singapore’s first Prime Minister, he spearheaded policies that not only changed the country but also shaped the Public Service to be what it is today. As a tribute to the man and his ideas, the Challenge team has produced a special edition to commemorate his impact on the Public Service.

“As a young civil servant, Mr Lee’s leadership left a deep impression on me and I had the great privilege of watching, from close up, the way he handled many important issues, such as relations with major countries, in both good and bad times. For Mr Lee, if something was worth doing for Singapore and Singaporeans, it was worth doing it very well. We saw this, for example, in his dedication to the cause of the trade unions, so that workers can have a share in the fruits of the nation’s progress; his promotion of home ownership so that every Singaporean has a stake in the country; his personal attention to the greening of Singapore which he saw as a means of gifting to every Singaporean, no matter his station in life, a very conducive urban environment. The list is endless. As we mourn the passing of a great leader, an astute statesman and an exceptional Singaporean, let us seek to emulate his passion and dedication in serving Singapore and Singaporeans. Let that be Mr Lee’s legacy to the public service.”

“Mr Lee embedded in us the psyche of survival and security when it comes to water, and it has been our guiding principle in PUB ever since. I recall the most critical afternoon meeting with him (in 2002) when my officer and I had to persuade him that our water master plan with NEWater is the answer to our water challenge. In the midst of the discussion, he fell strangely silent for some time, deep in thought. Suddenly he turned to me and pointedly asked me, as if cross-examining me in a court of law, whether we could deliver on our plan to wean Singapore out of water dependency on imported water. After spending so many afternoons with him, listening to his intense concern for water, how else could I respond except to give him a resounding “Yes”. A man of his vision and passion demanded and deserved nothing less. I remembered so well his reaction. He fell back into his chair, became silent again for a long while, and then to my amazement, he gave a smile the likes of which I have never seen before from him. With that, he rose and left the meeting. I knew he had decided we could make it. I was left in awe at the very calculated way he weighs the risks and takes a firm decision with no turning back.”


Lee Kuan Yew passes away on 23 Mar 2015
7 days of national mourning declared

Mr Lee, aged 91 passed away at 3:18am on Monday morning, 46 days after admission to Singapore General Hospital. Mr Lee was warded at SGH since 5 Feb for severe pneumonia and was on life support.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has declared a period of national mourning for Singapore's first prime minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew from today to Sunday (March 23 - 29). Mr Lee's body will lie in state at Parliament House from Wed to Sat (March 25 - 28). Those who wish to pay their respects can do so from 10am to 8pm daily during this period.

A State Funeral Service will be held at on Sun (March 29), 2pm, at the University Cultural Centre, National University of Singapore. The service will be attended by the late Mr Lee's family, friends and staff, the President, Cabinet Ministers, Members of Parliament, Old Guards, senior civil servants, grassroots leaders and Singaporeans from all walks of life, said the statement. The state funeral will be followed by a private cremation at Mandai Crematorium. State flags on all government buildings will be flown at half-mast from today to Sunday as a mark of respect.


Lee Kuan Yew medallion range to mark his 5th death anniversary “temporarily suspended” by Singapore Mint

Just hours after launching a series of medallions and busts dedicated to the founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew, The Singapore Mint has decided to “temporarily suspend” the range. At around 12.45pm on Monday (2 March), The Singapore Mint revealed in a statement that it had released medallions with the face of founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew’s face engraved on it, as well as busts resembling him to mark his fifth death anniversary.

Titled “The Pride of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew”, the series comprises of four commemorative gold, silver, and base-metal medallions, and made-to-order copper busts that come in two sizes. This latest range is part of the Singapore Salute collection. The ½ oz 999.9 fine gold and 1 oz 999 fine silver medallions in an oval shape are engraved with late Mr Lee portrait on it. The copper and nickel-plated zinc medallions also have pictures of sampans and Singapore’s skyline on the other side, showcasing the country’s development from its earlier days. As for the copper busts, they come in two different sizes – 110mm and 430mm.

Based on the Singapore Mint, the collection is “meticulously engraved and sculpted by the Singapore Mint’s master engravers with their skillful craftsmanship”, with a “dignified interpretation” of late Mr Lee’s image. “Mr Lee’s great foresight and determined pursuit of Singapore’s growth have played an important role in bringing Singapore to where it is today, and shaping the history of modern Singapore.” It continued, “The Pride of Singapore medallion range also seeks to remind Singaporeans to be resilient and indomitable to concur challenges and adversity in unity”. However, as of 7pm on the same day of the launch, the medallions and busts, priced between S$10 and S$1,888, were not available for orders anymore on The Singapore Mint’s website. The website has now a notice saying, “We have temporarily suspended this program until further notice.”


Parliamentary Statement by PM Lee Hsien Loong on calls to honour Mr Lee Kuan Yew, on 13 April 2015

During the month of Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s final illness, and the week of National Mourning after he passed away, Singa­poreans experienced a tremendous outpouring of emotions – gratitude, sorrow, and solidarity. People prayed for, grieved over and paid their last respects to the founding father who had done so much to create today’s Singapore. Many wrote touching messages in condolence books and cards, and made special tribute books and items. During the Special Session of Parliament, Members spoke movingly about Mr Lee’s contributions, what he meant to them, and their personal experiences of him. I thank this House, and all Singaporeans, for their tributes to my father.

Those of us who lived through this special moment in our history, and experienced this sense of togetherness in our shared grief, will remember it for the rest of our lives. Mr Lee’s passing brought us closer together as one people and intensified our sense of nationhood. It was his last gift to us. How should we remember and honour him – his person, his contributions, his ideals? Members of the House and the public have made many suggestions. There were several questions on the Order Paper today. Ms Foo Mee Har and Dr Lily Neo suggested printing his image on our currency notes and coins; Mr Ang Wei Nang and Dr Lily Neo suggested re-naming Changi Airport after him; and Ms Foo Mee Har suggested designating a day to commemorate our founding fathers every year. And there are many more suggestions.

These are all good ideas. But we should not rush into making decisions on this matter, especially so soon after Mr Lee has passed away. We should allow some time to pass, consider the ideas carefully, and make calm, considered decisions which will stand the test of time. We want to honour Mr Lee, but we must do so in the right way:
  • Ideals, not Monuments
  • Currency Notes
  • 38 Oxley Road
  • A Founders’ Memorial


A glimpse into the private life of Lee Kuan Yew
Lee Kuan Yew (back row, centre) outside his Norfolk Road home in 1936 with siblings (front, from left) Suan Yew, three; Monica, seven; Freddy, nine; and Dennis, 11; and parents Chua Jim Neo, 29; and Lee Chin Koon, 33
The night before Mr Lee (standing, centre) left for England, his family had a steak dinner at Pavilion Steakhouse in Orchard Road before walking to nearby Lloyd Studio for this family portrait, taken in 1946. (Clockwise from top left) Siblings Monica, Dennis, Freddy and Suan Yew, and parents Chua Jim Neo and Lee Chin Koon. Source: Lee Kuan Yew
Mr Lee asked his cousin Harold Liem to take photos of him and Ms Kwa together on Sept 5, 1946, in anticipation of the three years the couple would be apart while he studied law in England and she remained in Singapore
The couple, seen here in academic robes, graduated from Cambridge University on June 21, 1949, and was called to the Bar a year later
Mr Lee on a marine patrol boat named Tekong with (from left) Hsien Loong, Wei Ling, Hsien Yang and Mrs Lee on a Sunday outing in 1965. Source: Lee Kuan Yew

Growing up in colonial Singapore, Mr Lee Kuan Yew was like any typical child – footloose and fancy-free. The boy who would grow up to become prime minister would catch fighting fish from drains, fly kites and take leisurely swims in the sea. Born on Sept 16, 1923, to a wealthy Straits Chinese family, he was the eldest of five children of Shell Oil Company depot manager Lee Chin Koon and Mrs Chua Jim Neo. In 1935, he topped his school in an islandwide examination and clinched a place at the prestigious Raffles Institution. He was active in scouting, playing cricket and tennis, and debating.

Four years later, he came in first in Singapore and Malaya in the Senior Cambridge examinations, winning a scholarship to read English, economics and mathematics at Raffles College. His education was interrupted by World War II. A resourceful survivor, he found work as a clerk and an English-language editor for the Japanese propaganda department. He traded food on the black market, started a stationery gum business with Mr Yong Nyuk Lin in 1944, where he met Mr Yong’s sister-in-law, Ms Kwa Geok Choo, a former Raffles College classmate whom he started dating.

After the war, Mr Lee sailed for England in 1946 on his 23rd birthday. He enrolled in the London School of Economics to read law but transferred to the more idyllic Cambridge University the next year. Ms Kwa won the Queen’s Scholarship and joined Mr Lee at Cambridge in 1947 to read law. Eager to start their life together, Mr Lee and Ms Kwa married secretly on Dec 23, 1947, at Stratford-upon-Avon. Both Mr Lee and his wife graduated from Cambridge on June 21, 1949, with first class honours, with Mr Lee winning the only star for distinction on the final Law Tripos II honours list. A year later, they were called to the Bar at Middle Temple and returned to Singapore on Aug 1, 1950.

They held their official wedding at the Registry of Marriages on Sept 30, 1950, and began married life at the Lee family’s two-storey bungalow at 38 Oxley Road. Both found jobs as pupils at Laycock & Ong in Malacca Street. Five years later, they founded their own law firm, Lee & Lee, with Mr Lee’s brother Dennis.

Mr and Mrs Lee have three children, Hsien Loong, Wei Ling and Hsien Yang, and seven grandchildren. Mrs Lee died on Oct 2, 2010, at the age of 89, and Mr Lee on March 23, 2015, at the age of 91.

Lee Kuan Yew: I WILL GET UP!

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