Outgoing President of Singapore Tony Tan was overwhelmed and touched by the good wishes and affection shown by the public during the National Day Parade.
He emotionally said, “I spent a little more time than usual at the NDP.”
“Of course, this year’s parade is rather special for me because this will be the last time I will be officiating (the NDP) as the reviewing officer,” said the 77-year-old President to the reporters at the end of the event.
“Every NDP is special. Each one holds special memories for me … I’m very grateful for the opportunity to serve as President and to reach out to Singaporeans.”
Speaking about the importance of NDP, the President said, “To me, it’s more than just a marvellous show. It’s an expression of the Singapore spirit, and we must continue to strive for progress.
While Singapore also faces challenges, in terms of the economy and terrorism, he said that if Singaporeans work together “and support each other, we can overcome them”.
“I am confident that Singapore will continue to progress further, and we will continue building a better home for ourselves and our children … but we have to strive to work on, there is no end to our journey,” he added.
Dr Tony Tan, who was elected the seventh President of Singapore, will have to leave his position on August 31 at the end of his six-year term. He succeeded the late S R Nathan after winning the contest on August 27, 2011.
He entered politics in 1979 when he was elected the Member of Parliament for Sembawang Group Representative Constituency, before being appointed Senior Minister of State for Education the same year.
Subsequently, he held a string of appointments in the Trade and Industry and Finance ministries, before retiring from Government.