Months of training paid off in bringing the National Day Parade (NDP) to life yesterday and the performers had another reason to cheer at the end of the show after President Halimah Yacob went over to mingle and take photos with them.
The first female President to grace the parade, Madam Halimah received a warm reception from the crowd and the performers.
It was not the first time that Madam Halimah, 63, had a formal role to play in NDP. Before she became President, she was the reviewing officer at every parade preview since 2013. During that time, she held the post of Speaker of Parliament, which she relinquished last year before being declared President-elect on Sept 13, 2017.
She became Singapore's first Malay President in 47 years, after a walkover in the country's first presidential election reserved for candidates from the Malay community.
While Madam Halimah did not speak to the media during the parade yesterday, she said in a Facebook post on Tuesday that National Day is an occasion for Singaporeans to celebrate their nation's independence and to reflect on how far they have come.
"This year's Parade is especially meaningful to me, because the programme will involve Singaporeans from diverse talents," she wrote. "It is a good reminder that regardless of background, we can all contribute."
Number of performers in the parade’s show segment this year
Yesterday, Madam Halimah, who was decked out in red and white, attended the parade with her husband, Mr Mohamed Abdullah Alhabshee, also 63.