Mercy Relief (MR) today presented a Special Tribute to Japanese peace crusader, Soka Gakkai International (SGI) President Dr Daisaku Ikeda, for his unrelenting efforts in promoting peace throughout the last half century. The first SGI President made his first trip outside Japan on 2 October 1960, embarking on his worldwide efforts to promote peace, culture and education. This date was then designated as SGI World Peace Day, where more than 12 million of its members worldwide commemorate its significance annually.
Addressing more than 1,200 Soka members at the Singapore Soka Association (SSA) headquarters in Tampines, MR’s Advisor and Speaker of Parliament, Abdullah Tarmugi, shared: “Over the last eight years, we have seen an alarming rise in the number of disasters in the region – both man-made (such as armed conflicts) and natural ones including earthquakes, tsunamis, typhoons, floods and landslides. As such, it is Mercy Relief’s fervent hope that Man could be at peace with one another, and also at peace with Nature. Today, Mercy Relief has great pleasure in presenting a Special Tribute to SGI President, Dr Daisaku Ikeda, in recognition of his unending mission in promoting peace amongst mankind over the last 51 years”.
(Left photo): MR Advisor Abdullah Tarmugi (in blue top), at the observance of the SGI World Peace Day.
(Right): SSA General Director Ong Bon Chai lifting aloft the Special Tribute for the SSA members’ viewing, after receiving it from MR Advisor Abdullah Tarmugi.
The MR Special Tribute was presented by Mr Abdullah and was received by SSA General Director Ong Bon Chai, on behalf of Dr Ikeda. The Special Tribute reads: “To H.E. Dr Daisaku Ikeda – In recognition and honour of your unflinching, untiring and noble endeavour and contribution, towards the advancement of global peace and the betterment of humanity. Your strength, perseverance, dedication and charisma are humbling traits for our next generation to embrace and emulate, in striving for the desired global harmony and cooperation”.
The Special Tribute reads: “To H.E. Dr Daisaku Ikeda – In recognition and honour of your unflinching, untiring and noble endeavour and contribution, towards the advancement of global peace and the betterment of humanity. Your strength, perseverance, dedication and charisma are humbling traits for our next generation to embrace and emulate, in striving for the desired global harmony and cooperation”.
(Left photo): Dr Ikeda met with then-PM Lee Kuan Yew in Singapore on 9 February 1988.
(Right): Dr Ikeda calling on then-President S R Nathan at the Istana on 23 November 2000.
Dr Ikeda (2nd from right) and then-Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew (2nd from left) at the Chinese University of Hong Kong on 7 Dec 2000 to receive their respective doctorates.
Dr Ikeda is no stranger to Singaporeans and Singaporean leaders. In 1988, he met with then-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew at the Istana under the latter’s invitation. Twelve years on, he returned to the Istana under the invitation of then-President S R Nathan. Remarkably, Dr Ikeda has been conferred 313 doctorates from 303 universities in 55 countries since 1975; Honorary citizenship from more than 690 cities, states and local governments around the world. He was involved in more than 7000 dialogues, most notably with Dr Arnold Toynbee and Mr Mikhail Gorbachev.
Mr Abdullah added, “MR is very fortunate to have the SSA as our institutional partner since MR’s inception 8 years ago. You have partnered and supported us in many ways, through donations (more than SGD 1.1 million), provision of hundreds of volunteers and the use of your premises for many of MR’s events including the Stakeholders’ Nite and the launch of the island-wide ‘Cultivating the Grateful & Gracious Spirit’ programme. MR has also benefitted from the SGI regional network in countries like Japan, Sri Lanka and Taiwan. Through this network, MR was able to provide timely and effective aid to our crises-stricken Asian neighbours”.
SSA General Director Ong Bon Chai presenting to MR Chairman T K Udairam the ’Soka Gakkai Award of Honour’, conferred by SGI President Dr Ikeda to Mercy Relief on 25 November 2010, for the Singapore-born humanitarian organisation’s valiant relief efforts in Asia over the last decade, witnessed by then-Foreign Minister George Yeo.
About Mercy Relief
Mercy Relief is a Singaporean humanitarian organisation which engages in both disaster relief and sustainable development programmes. It was established in 2003 as an independent non-governmental humanitarian charity responding to the human tragedies in Asia. Mercy Relief’s aid programme focuses on providing timely and effective assistance to disaster-stricken communities and has maintained the delivery of emergency aid within 72 hours from the point of appeal for assistance.
In the past 12 years, Mercy Relief has disbursed over S$32 million in aid across 40 disaster relief and 53 sustainable development initiatives. Mercy Relief has impacted an aggregate of 2 million lives in 24 countries and areas, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, DPR Korea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Yemen.
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