Kamala Harris Visits The Istana & Gets An Orchid Named After Her
United States Vice-President Kamala Harris landed in Singapore on Sunday (22 Aug) for a 3-day business visit.
Ms Harris visited the Istana this morning (23 Aug) for a meeting with President Halimah Yacob, followed by a meeting with PM Lee Hsien Loong.
As announced, she also received an orchid named in her honour during a ceremony.
Kamala Harris has orchid hybrid named in her honour
The Istana ceremony took place on Monday (23 Aug) morning, during what is Ms Harris’ first official visit to Singapore.
She also had an orchid named in her honour, the Papilionanda Kamala Harris. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) noted that it is an orchid hybrid.
If you’re wondering about the significance — the orchid is of course, Singapore’s national flower, and many foreign dignitaries have received this honour.
Fun fact: Ms Harris is named after a lotus. “Kamala” means “lotus flower” in Sanskrit.
Ms Harris also called on President Halimah.
Following that, a press conference with PM Lee awaited.
Regional security a focus of meetings
The visit is certainly not just for leisure, as it’s sure to be a jam-packed schedule for Ms Harris.
On the agenda, according to The Straits Times (ST), are:
- The US’ focus on revitalising alliances in the Indo-Pacific region particularly
- Global public health, including the Covid-19 pandemic
- Economic partnerships
These are highly important for not only Singapore but also the US as we seek cooperation even as global powers converge.
Hope for meetings to go well
The meetings, besides being historic, will also look to strengthen our ties with the US, an important ally.
Globally, Singapore is small but important given our location and position economically.
Having good relations with our neighbours and world powers is highly important if we are to secure our safety and prosperity for the coming years.
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Featured image adapted from Tarini Parti on Twitter.