Celebrating good ties with good food

PM Lee and his wife Ho Ching with Mr Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor, surrounded by the media at the Seri Perdana, the Malaysian Prime Minister's official residence, in Putrajaya yesterday. PM Lee and Mr Najib at yesterday's lunch hosted by the Mala
PM Lee and Mr Najib at yesterday's lunch hosted by the Malaysian leader. "PM Najib offering me more durian at lunch. How could I say no?" quipped Mr Lee on Facebook.PHOTOS: LEE HSIEN LOONG/ FACEBOOK

Local delicacies like the durian held pride of place yesterday during Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's "brief but significant" visit to Putrajaya. Mr Lee, his wife and Singapore officials had arrived at the Malaysian Prime Minister's official residence, Seri Perdana, for the signing of a memorandum of understanding on the high-speed rail project linking Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

But before the event, the two leaders had a private meeting, after which Datuk Seri Najib Razak hosted the Singaporeans to lunch.

It was a buffet of largely local food such as Ampang yong tau foo, Penang laksa - and the king of fruits.

On Facebook last night, Mr Lee shared a snapshot of himself and Mr Najib with their plates of durian. He wrote, with a smiling emoji: "PM Najib offering me more durian at lunch. How could I say no?"

As Mr Najib said after the signing: "It goes to show how much we can achieve by working together in the spirit of good neighbourliness and partnership - and particularly when we can share a plate of durian."


PM Lee and his wife Ho Ching with Mr Najib and his wife Rosmah Mansor, surrounded by the media at the Seri Perdana, the Malaysian Prime Minister's official residence, in Putrajaya yesterday. PHOTOS: LEE HSIEN LOONG/ FACEBOOK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 20, 2016, with the headline 'Celebrating good ties with good food'. Print Edition | Subscribe