Geylang Serai has been lit up since last Saturday to celebrate this blessed month of Ramadan. The annual Hari Raya Light Up committee, with Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, Minister for Social and Family Development and Associate Prof Fatimah Lateef, Adviser to Marine Parade GROs at its helm, declared this year’s theme to be “ Relieving our Kampung Spirit“.
Our Prime Minister, Mr Lee Hsien Loong, was there to officially launch Hari Raya Light Up 2016 and gave an inspiring speech (first in Malay then in English!). He ended by making a point on how important the Geylang Ramadan Bazaar was to the community:
“It is a way we grow in Singapore, it is a way we celebrate our multi-cultural heritage and richness in Singapore. It is a way we come together and enjoy each other’s important days and come together more closely as one Singapore.”
As someone who’s born and raised on our sunny, little island (set in the sea), I am grateful that we live in a country that is more racially tolerant as compared to others. Like what PM Lee mentioned, we bask in the joy of each other’s racial/religious celebrations despite belonging to different races/faiths, which helps promote racial and religious harmony. However, just because Singapore is safe and peaceful now does not mean it will stay that way forever. Therefore, the kampung spiritis needed now more than ever, not only for Hari Raya, but as a lifelong value to keep our nation strong.
All images retrieved from @ourkampungspiritsg and video from Prime Minister’s Office, Singapore
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