Chief of the Malaysian Armed Forces, General (GEN) Tan Sri' Raja Mohamed Affandi bin Raja Mohamed Noor was conferred Singapore's highest military award, the Darjah Utama Bakti Cemerlang (Tentera) [Distinguished Service Order (Military)], by President Halimah Yacob at the Istana this afternoon. Guests at the investiture included Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen, Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant-General (LG) Perry Lim, Permanent Secretary for Defence Development Mr Neo Kian Hong, Chief of Army MG Melvyn Ong, as well as other senior government officials and military officers from Singapore and Malaysia.
GEN Tan Sri' Affandi was conferred the award for his significant contributions in strengthening the relationship between the Malaysian Armed Forces and the Singapore Armed Forces. Under his leadership, the defence cooperation between the two armed forces has grown from strength to strength. Other than flagship bilateral exercises such as Semangat Bersatu and Malapura, the two armed forces enjoy a wide range of interactions such as high-level visits, officers exchange programmes, and mutual attendance of courses. At the multilateral level, GEN Tan Sri' Affandi has promoted closer military-to-military relations and cooperation between our armed forces under the Five Power Defence Arrangements and the ASEAN Defence Ministers' Meeting. Both armed forces also work together closely in operations such as the Malacca Straits Patrol. These frequent interactions have contributed to regional peace and stability, and strengthened the rapport and camaraderie among the officers and men of both armed forces.
GEN Tan Sri' Affandi, who is in Singapore from 19 to 20 March 2018, called on Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the Istana this afternoon after the investiture. He also reviewed a Guard of Honour at the Istana prior to the investiture. GEN Tan Sri' Affandi also called on Dr Ng and LG Lim earlier today at the Ministry of Defence before the investiture. During the calls, both sides reaffirmed the strong defence ties and expressed commitment to further deepen bilateral defence cooperation.