Facebook page Singaporean Diary on Merlion Island (獅子島上: 新加坡人生活日記) shared a photo of a Primary 2 Chinese Textbook which deifies Singapore’s first Prime Minister Lee Kwan Yew (LKY). The book contains a short fable titled ‘The Great Gardener’ which described how the late PM Lee planted the yellow cow wood trees in Holland Village many years ago and how he continued to plan one tree every year on the island.
It says, “And now, this tiny island has transformed into a large garden, with flowers blossoming and tall trees everywhere. We live in this beautiful Island nation, we love it, we thank our Great gardener, our founding PM Mr. Lee Kuan Yew!”
Local schools have been teaching their students to adore LKY, often to the point of idolisation which was especially apparent just after he passed away and students were told to line up and bow to a portrait of him.
The admin of the Facebook page commented on the post that if they had children, they would prefer to teach then that Mr Lee isn’t the only person who was responsible for building this nation.
The admin added that LKY had reminded people before that he did not want to be idolised, something his daughter Dr Lee Weiling emphasised on the first anniversary of his passing when she said that her father would have ‘cringed at the hero worship’ that developed.