Display Singapore flags on Sunday, young grassroots leaders urge

SINGAPORE - A group of young grassroots leaders from East Coast Group Constituency (GRC) are calling on their fellow countrymen to display Singapore flags outside their homes on Sunday as they bid their final farewell to former Singapore Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.

"In his final journey, we want to tell Mr Lee, 'Rest in peace, we assure you that as Singaporeans we will build on your legacy in unity, in confidence, SG100 will be a Singapore better than today,'" said East Coast GRC MP Lim Swee Say, introducing the idea suggested by about 50 young grassroots volunteers.

One of these volunteers, Mr Leong Yi Xing, 32, a finance executive, said:"Mr Lee has uplifted my parent's lives, my grandparents' lives."

He added: "But more than that, he has rallied the nation, planted a seed in us that we can move forward with confidence and unity."

As debate rages on in social media on whether to wear black or white on Sunday, the day of Mr Lee's state funeral, the volunteers thought it was also important to express confidence for the future. "Some people say black is the colour of grief, white is a symbol of hope- of looking ahead for Singapore, but no matter what colour we don, Singaporeans can identify with the Singapore flag," said volunteer Nurul Uzla Abdullah.

The young grassroots leaders hope to get the support of the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, which administers usage guidelines for the national flag.

Guidelines on the National Heritage Board website note that outside the National Day celebrations period (July 1 to Sept 30), the flag must be flown only from a flagpole. And if it is displayed or flown at night, it should be properly illuminated.

Besides recognising Mr Lee's contributions, they acknowledged the efforts of other pioneer leaders such as like Dr Goh Keng Swee, Mr S. Rajaratnam, Mr Toh Chin Chye as well as ordinary hardworking pioneers who made Singapore what it is today.

"We are beneficiaries of their efforts," said Mr Yusuf Ali, 36, an academic at the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine.

"Mr Lee has been a unifying force, let's show him we will preserve that unity and fortitude by flying our national flags this Sunday," he added.

Join ST's WhatsApp Channel and get the latest news and must-reads.