Singaporean PM Tours Naypyidaw

Singapore, Myanmar, Burma, Lee Hsien Loong, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Naypyidaw, Asean

Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, left, talks with Burma’s President Thein Sein during a break in Asean meetings over the weekend. (Photo: Lee Hsien Loong / Facebook)

RANGOON — During a weekend of tense discussions in Naypyidaw, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong took a break from the 24th Summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to tour some areas around the Burmese capital.

The prime minister described for his Facebook followers what he saw.

“Took a drive around, including to the older nearby town of Pyinmana, which has a population of 100,000 (about the same size as Toa Payoh),” he wrote in a post on the social media site on Sunday, referring to a Singaporean district.

Of the Burmese town, he wrote, “The streets were lined with shophouses, and thronged with people. It looked and felt like Singapore or Penang in the 1950s and 1960s, except that many of the residents were taking pictures of us with smartphones!”

Pyinmana, located about 2 kilometers from Naypyidaw, is a logging town and sugar cane refinery center which was formerly a base for the Burmese army during World War II.

Lee Hsien Loong was in Naypyidaw on Saturday and Sunday for the Asean summit, which Burma is hosting for the first time.

He was accompanied by other Singaporean senior government officials, including Trade and Industry Minister Lim Hng Kiang, and Law and Foreign Affairs Minister K Shanmugam.

During the summit, the 10-member regional bloc agreed to issue a joint statement calling for restraint over escalating disputes in the South China Sea.

5 Responses to Singaporean PM Tours Naypyidaw

  1. Comparing the city in the middle of the country with Singapore in 1950 tells us that Myanmar military regime was so useless and self-serving. It is true. Using the army to protect a few generals’ interest for the past six decades was our problem. These few generals are still seeking for their own gains.

  2. Singapore banks “launder” a lot of “dirty money” from Burmeae drug-warlords (such as Hsinghan Lo, Khun Sa) and MI despots (such as Khin Nyunt and Than Shwe) and their cronies (such as Steven Law, Tay Za, Zaw Zaw, Serge Poon etc.) and that is one of the main reasons Burma is poorer than Singapore.
    I am sure that Irrawaddy would not dare to publish this comment!

  3. Singapore PM is a very honest man and spoke the truth. If we can read the true message behind his remark we ( all of us plus the Tat Ma Daw and the government ) should realise that we are about 50 or 60 years behind Singapore. That is two whopping generations worth of gap! So if we set aside all of our differences , tighten our belt , put our feet firmly on the ground and work like Singaporeans did, we may be where Singapore now is in 50 years. Can anybody see this kind of national awakening in Myanmar? My greatest worry is that in 50 years time, another PM from Singapore comes around and says ” you know what, this place looks like what Singapore was in 50s and 60s” .

    • Tint Naing,
      You are damn right about that. If the regime is trying to institute genuine democracy, Myanmar can catch up in 2070 the level of today’s Singapore. However, Singapore will be way ahead in 2070. So, military dictators(Ne Win to Thein Sein) better spend time in HELL eternity.

  4. With a flashlight going around the rice fields would be an adventure.The poisonous vipers are hunting farm rats at fact he was visiting the notorious viper belt..the region of Lehway,Ela,Pyinmana and Tatkone.
    Too bad.He didn’t have the chance to drink the water from the wells at Pyinmana ,which has brown color and the smell of chlorine.
    I guess he felt boring ( Pyin in Burmese)durinng the summit,so He didn’ take a rest( mana in Burmese) and was just hanging around.

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