Aranda Lee Kuan Yew, the orchid named in his honour
Following Mr. Lee Kuan Yew’s passing, NParks chief executive Kenneth Er and National Orchid Gardens nursery manager David Lim presented Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong an orchid named after his father at the Istana today (24 March).
Named Aranda Lee Kuan Yew, this species of orchid takes between three to five years to breed and grow. It produces flower sprays of up to 10 flowers each, with each bloom measuring approximately 9.5cm to 10cm across. The orchid has bright golden yellow petals with a green tint and a tinge of white at the base.
David Lim wanted the flower to reflected Mr. Lee’s qualities through its colours and stature, and match Vanda Kwa Geok Choo as well.
Visitors to the wake can view the orchid in the main hall of Sri Temasek, where Mr. Lee’s casket is.
The public can also view the orchid in Parliament House, where Mr. Lee’s body will be housed from Wednesday to Saturday.
The legacy of Lee Kuan Yew and Kwa Geok Choo lives on
Besides having flowers named after them, here are some others named after modern Singapore’s founding father and his wife:
Lee Kuan Yew:
Mr. Lee’s alma mater National University of Singapore (NUS) named the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy after him in 2004. This was established after Mr. Lee finally relented to being affiliated to an institution.
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy:
But no, don’t expect more institutions to be named after him anytime soon. The man did not feel the need to replace the likes of Sir Stamford Raffles. Till date, there are no attraction named after him, despite his sacrifices for the nation he built.
Kwa Geok Choo:
Singapore Management University named its new law library, Kwa Geok Choo library, a scholars programme and a top law graduate award in Mdm. Kwa’s honour in 2011. That same year, NUS named a professorship in property law, bursaries, a distinguished visitors programme and scholarships after her. Nanyang Girls’ High School also unveiled Yu Zhi library, taken after her Chinese name.
A nation mourns for your loss, Mr. Lee.