The Prime Minister’s Office announced Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, the founding father of Singapore who guided its development into a modern, stable nation as well as one of the world’s richest, died at 91.
Lee Kuan Yew, was a Singapore politician. He governed Singapore for 31 years. He is not only recognized as the founding father of modern Singapore and also “Architect of Modern Singapore”.
In a televised address, his son Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong paid tribute to him.
“He fought for our independence, built a nation where there was none, and made us proud to be Singaporeans. We won’t see another man like him”.
Mr. Lee Hsien Loong has declared a seven-day period of national mourning. As a mark of respect, the state flags on all government buildings will be flown at half-mast for the mourning period, which starts from March 23rd, and ends on March 29th.
US President Barack Obama said after meeting the still-healthy Mr Lee at the White House in October 2009 that “this is one of the legendary figures of Asia in the 20th and 21st centuries”.
Mr. Obama called Lee and “true giant of history” while UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon called him a “legendary figure in Asia”.
As the co-founder and first Secretary-General of the People’s Action Party (PAP), he led the party to eight victories from 1959 to 1990, and oversaw the separation of Singapore from Malaysia in 1965 and its subsequent transformation from a relatively underdeveloped colonial outpost with no natural resources into a “First World” Asian Tiger. He was one of the most influential political figures in Asia.
Singapore’s second Prime Minister, Goh Chok Tong, appointed him Senior Minister in 1990. He held the advisory post of Minister Mentor, created by his son Lee Hsien Loong, when the latter became the nation’s third prime minister in August 2004.
With successive ministerial positions over 50 years, Lee was also one of history’s longest-serving ministers. On May 14th, 2011, Lee and Goh announced their retirement from the cabinet after the 2011 general election but Lee remained a Member of Parliament./.