Specially For PM Lee’s 65th Birthday – Here’s His Story In Pictures
It’s our Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s 65th birthday, and to pay tribute to his years of service and dedication to Singapore, we’ve compiled a photo series of his journey from a wee baby to being the PM Lee we all know and love today.[caption id="attachment_22586" align="alignnone" width="768"] Photo Credits: Mrs Lee Kuan Yew’s collection[/caption]
Back then, PM Lee was the only child. Perhaps that’s why his grin was so wide.
The late Mr Lee Kuan Yew knew the importance of spending quality family time, taking PM Lee and his siblings out for a family trip every once in a while. Here we see an 11-year-old PM Lee, young and curious.[caption id="attachment_22621" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Ministry of Information and the Arts Collection, courtesy of National Archives of Singapore[/caption]
PM Lee visiting Lazarus Island with his father, the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew. This was not the first, nor the only time he accompanied his father on political trips.[caption id="attachment_22619" align="alignnone" width="760"] PM Lee (14 years old) and sister Lee Wei Ling (10 years old) in 1966[/caption]
Winners of MOE’s National Language Month Essay and Poster Competitions, PM Lee and sister Lee Wei Ling are talented writers since their pre-teen years.[caption id="attachment_22618" align="alignnone" width="762"] Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was a member of the Catholic High School band in 1968[/caption]
A man of many talents, PM Lee was once a member of the Catholic High School band as well! He played the clarinet.[caption id="attachment_22616" align="alignnone" width="720"] PM Lee during his National Service[/caption]
PM Lee graduated from Cambridge with a Double First Class Honours in Mathematical Statistics and Mathematical Economics, and a Diploma in Computer Science in 1974.
He then went on to obtain a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard in 1980.
PM Lee’s marriage to Wong Ming Yang back in 1981. It was a beautiful, quiet wedding.[caption id="attachment_22617" align="alignnone" width="722"] PM Lee as a Member of Parliament in Teck Ghee, when he was 32 years old.[/caption]
PM Lee was appointed as the Director of Joint Operations Planning Directorate from 1981 to 1982. He then became the Chief of Staff (General Staff) from 1982 to 1984, by then having risen to the rank of Brigadier-General.
PM Lee left the SAF to pursue his true passion: Politics.[caption id="attachment_22622" align="aligncenter" width="434"] PM Lee carrying his son Hongyi, while his wife Ho Ching was pregnant with Haoyi.[/caption]
A family portrait of PM Lee with his parents, siblings and children.
The swearing in ceremony of Prime Minister Lee in 2004, a solemn affair as the magnitude of his position sunk in.
It’s hard not to grin when your dad is congratulating you on becoming the Prime Minister of Singapore.
He gave us a big scare in August 2016 when he took ill on stage during the National Day Rally Speech.
The cause was due to exhaustion from being on his feet for hours, and he came back to stage after an hour to a standing ovation.[caption id="attachment_22630" align="alignnone" width="650"] Photo Credits: Tsering Topgyal[/caption]
Stay cool, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Here’s to a fantastic 65th birthday!
Also, read Happy Birthday PM Lee! Here Are 10 Reasons Singapore Has The Coolest Prime Minister
Happy Birthday PM Lee! Here Are 10 Reasons Singapore Has The Coolest Prime Minister
Happy 65th birthday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong!
It’s been 13 years since you became the 3rd Prime Minister of Singapore, and with plans to step down in 2021, it seems like time is passing way too fast.
For now, let’s take a trip down memory lane and remind ourselves that Singapore has the ultimate coolest Prime Minister there ever was!
Even as a toddler, PM Lee was all charm. He was a suave fashionista, rocking high-waisted shorts and a million dollar smile.
Photo Credits: Mrs Lee Kuan Yew’s collection
These days, whether rocking a bow-tie and tuxedo,[caption id="attachment_22607" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Chip Somodevilla[/caption]
a soft batik shirt,[caption id="attachment_22609" align="alignnone" width="763"] Photo Credits: MCI[/caption]
or a polka dotted maroon tie with a pink shirt,
our PM Lee still exudes a quiet, fashionable grace.
2. Totally Gungho!
While catching up with Ang Mo Kio GRC and Sengkang West grassroots leaders and volunteers during his Chinese New Year open house, he went all in for a jump shot when it was suggested.[caption id="attachment_22602" align="alignnone" width="960"] Photo Credits: Terence Tan[/caption]
No holds barred, no second thoughts.
3. Selfie King
Possibly one of the most social media savvy politician out there, our PM Lee is truly the selfie king![caption id="attachment_22588" align="alignnone" width="710"] Photo Credits: Glenn Fawcett[/caption] [caption id="attachment_22587" align="alignnone" width="640"] Photo Credits: SPH[/caption] [caption id="attachment_22589" align="alignnone" width="763"] Photo Credits: OngWee Jin[/caption] [caption id="attachment_22590" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Ernest Chua[/caption]
With unshaking hands and long arms, our Prime Minister is always down for taking a selfie with everyone, as long as you ask nicely.
4. Secret Photographer
If he wasn’t our Prime Minister, PM Lee would have made the cut as a world-renowned Photographer.
All taken from his Facebook page, these photos were shot by PM Lee himself:
There are long exposure shots, beautiful scenic pictures, and even candid kangaroo photos!
5. Great sense of humour
Back in August 2016, when PM Lee officially visited the United States, he took over the White House’s Instagram account for a day.
He them promptly proceeded to post this photo later on in the day, showing the Americans that they’re not the only one with a hilarious leader.
6. Ultimate trooper
Remember when PM Lee had taken ill during his National Day Rally speech on August 21st 2016?[caption id="attachment_22599" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Photo Credits: Wee Teck Hian[/caption]
To everyone’s surprise and relief, he came back on stage insisting that he finish his speech.
The first thing he said?
“Thank you for waiting for me. I gave everyone a scare.”
Always putting us first, even when he was unwell.
7. Possibly a genius
Graduating from Cambridge in 1973 with Double First Class Honours in Mathematical Statistics and Mathematical Economics and a distinction in a Diploma in Computer Science, our Prime Minister was the first Singaporean to obtain the title of Senior Wrangler.
Senior Wrangler is the title given to the top mathematics undergraduate at Cambridge. With that title, PM Lee obtained one of the greatest intellectual achievements in Britain.
8. Sudoku solver
Yes, our Prime Minister literally wrote a C++ code for a Sudoku solver.
A code that Associate Professor Ng Wee Keong, the Associate Chair of Research at Nanyang Technological University’s School of Computer Engineering, as well as senior lecturer Aaron Tan of the School of Computing at National University of Singapore, called “well-structured” and “well-written” respectively.
9. Beloved by the public
With just an updated profile picture, PM Lee received over 20k likes, 316 shares and 399 comments.
Try scrolling through the comments section yourself and enjoy the wholesome messages posted.
10. Dedicated Prime Minister of Singapore
A man who constantly puts Singapore and her citizens first, PM Lee has spent the past 33 years in Singapore politics.
Happy 65th Birthday to you, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong! Here’s wishing you good health, a wonderful birthday, and many happy returns.
*PM Lee was born on 10 February, 1952.
Also, read Look How Far Singapore Has Come! We Compare The Now & Then
8 SG Politicians Rocking The Instagram Game Better Than You
If you’re at all surprised that politicians in Singapore can be social media-savvy (despite all the incidents that seem to befall their Facebook accounts), then this list will show you that Instagram isn’t just for 20-somethings with a penchant for #ootd shots.
From photographs of bak chor mee to campaigning on the ground to selfies — and trust us, there are a lot of selfies! – here are the top 10 Singaporean politicians to follow on our favourite photo sharing app.
Lee Hsien Loong / @leehsienloong
Did you think we would start our list with anyone else? Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who was among one of the first politicians to join Instagram, uploads snapshots of his life regularly onto the social media platform with warm captions, allowing followers to engage him through comments. Also, check out his #guesswhere photographs, which often showcase a less mainstream image of Singapore (basically, not MBS!).
Baey Yam Keng / @baeyyamkeng
It’s evident that Instagram’s selfie king, Baey Yam Keng, who is the Parliamentary Secretary, and MCCY MP for Tampines GRC, hasn’t lost his gut instincts for what makes a great shot. From his Instagram page, we can deduce that Baey is a fitness nut who has even got his colleagues to work out with him (we feel for you, Grace Fu and Koh Poh Koon…). Oh, and he’s on Snapchat too!
He Ting Ru / @tingruhe
Dressed in blue most of the time, He Ting Ru, who is the Secretary of Workers’ Party, and ran in the last General Election last September, is definitely one to follow on Instagram. Being a cat lady (her family was reported to have taken in 8 strays), her updates are down-to-earth and extremely personal. You’ll find shots of her lunch, cats, more cats, and what you can basically expect from your next door neighbour who’s super busy but still manages to find time to post updates.
Kevryn Lim / @kevryn_lim
Kevryn Lim’s Instagram page says one thing: badass, although her Instagram bio reads a little pseudo-Machiavellian: “You can’t make people love you, but you can make them fear you!”. She made her debut in last September’s General Election when she ran as a candidate under the National Solidarity Party, and has made quite the impression ever since. Best photographs on her Instagram page include shots of her abs at the gym, skylines of Singapore, and her adorable toddler.
Sylvia Lim / @sylvialim65
Sylvia Lim, a member of Workers’ Party, and a Member of Parliament representing Aljunied GRC, is a regular on Instagram. Her posts, which can get up to hundreds of likes, often offer followers a peek into the heartlands — be it mee suah stalls that come highly recommended or traditional theatre that may not be as popular in today’s day and age. However, what struck us as the most Singaporean shot of the city-state may just be that rooster on a vehicle.
Teo Ser Luck / @teo_serluck
Bak chor kway teow soup? Hell yeah! PAP’s Teo Ser Luck, who is the country’s current Minister of State at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, as well as the mayor of the Northeast District, is no stranger to Instagram, although his posts are quite sporadic. Plus, his hashtags are seriously hilarious, what with “MPsofreepostfoodagain”, “nohorserun” and “talksomuchyouMPorfoodcritic”.
Seah Kian Peng / @seahkianpeng
Seah Kian Peng, a PAP member and the MP representing Marine Parade GRC, isn’t one to shy away from telling his followers about his enthusiasm regarding sports, from rugby to running to football. You will definitely be able to find photographs of him stretching away in between lots and lots of people shots – from residents to family to Cai Shen Ye strutting it during Chinese New Year.
Tan Chuan Jin / @chuanjin1
If you want a little more colour in your life, why not follow Tan Chuan-Jin? The country’s Minister for Social and Family Development has got a rather vibrant Instagram page, featuring beautiful shots of Singapore Airlines’ planes at Changi Airport, foodporn, and flowers. And if you think that’s not enough, guess what… the guy posts photographs of cats and dogs as well. Can’t beat that.
Are there other politicians you think we should have highlighted? Drop us a tip!
(Header image credit: Surprise! 8 Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About PM Lee!
Surprise! 8 Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About PM Lee!
Despite being a well-known public figure, there are always things about PM Lee that surprise us. Take a look at the list and see if any of it has made you do a double take.
1. He learned the Jawi script since he was five[caption id="attachment_4579" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: The Malaysian Times[/caption]
Not much is said about the tidbit, but according to the biography of the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, he wanted PM Lee to learn Malay in the original Jawi script. The reason? He thought it would be helpful to use “on the local or international scene”.
When I was five, my only habit was walking into a glass door accidentally.
This means that PM Lee speaks fluent English, Mandarin, and Malay. Word is, he also has considerable knowledge in Russian.
2. He used to play the clarinet[caption id="attachment_4581" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Your Space Music Lessons[/caption]
Academics aside, PM Lee also has a musical background. During his time at National Junior College, he played the unconventional clarinet. His mentor was none other than the Associate Professor Ho Hwee Long, a beloved and respected figure in the music field.
3. He was one of the recipients of the President’s Scholarship in 1970[caption id="attachment_4586" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Visual Hunt[/caption]
Just so you know, PM Lee was also awarded the Singapore Armed Forces Overseas Scholarship in 1971 to study mathematics at Cambridge University.[caption id="attachment_4873" align="aligncenter" width="600"] (PM Lee’s Facebook)[/caption]
4. He was one of the top mathematics undergraduate at Trinity College, Cambridge University[caption id="attachment_4582" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Trinity College Google+[/caption]
It’s safe to say that PM Lee is a math whiz. Because, word is, the undergraduate mathematics course in Trinity is a killer. Besides his achievements in the numbers field, PM Lee also graduated with a B.A. with first-class honours and a diploma with distinction in computer science in 1974.
5. If he weren’t in politics, he would be a lecturer[caption id="attachment_4837" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Lee Hsien Loong Facebook page[/caption]
You would think that if PM Lee weren’t in politics, he would work in the computer science field. But that’s not the case at all. During a Q&A session on Facebook, he revealed that he would like to work as a teacher or lecturer, citing, “It is fun to interact with young people.”
Hmm, maybe a Computer Science lecturer?
6. He shares a birthday with Big Nose Hyung[caption id="attachment_4580" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Drama Fever[/caption]
Or should I say, Race Starter. South-Korean comedian Ji Suk-jin and PM Lee were both born on the 10th of February; the former was born in 1966, while the latter 1952. I bet this tidbit tickles your funny bone — especially if you’re a hardcore Running Man fan.
7. He’s into coding[caption id="attachment_4577" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Lee Hsien Loong Facebook page[/caption]
By now, most of us would know that PM Lee has a coding background, but did you know that he’s the only world leader who can code?
Back on May 2015, PM Lee revealed in a Facebook post that he wrote a Sudoku solver. Not only did he share his passion, but his coding chops were also clearly shown.
When he visited the Facebook headquarters in America, Mark Zuckerberg gave him an artwork box adorned with the lines from a computer programme PM Lee himself wrote!
If you want to poke around his creation, here’s the link to the file on Google Drive. It’s official: geek is the new cool.
8. He’s the highest paid Prime Minister in the world[caption id="attachment_4578" align="alignnone" width="700"] Image credit: Statista[/caption]
Despite taking a 28% pay cut, PM Lee still remains the highest paid political leader in the world. According to various sources, he was earning S$3,870,000 a year between 2008 to 2012. Currently, he earns S$2,200,000 a year.
Take a look at the infographic above, he’s even knocked Barack Obama out of the park.
Did this list surprise you? What are some interesting things you think we should know about PM Lee? Don’t forget to let us know on Facebook!
Source: From Third World to First: The Singapore Story: 1965-2000 & Biography Your Dictionary
(Featured image credit: World Economic Forum)
Also read: What Would Singapore Government Agencies’ Slogans Be If They Were Honest?