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15 June 2023, Singapore – Philippine Vice President and Secretary of Education Hon. Sara Z. Duterte made an official visit to Singapore on 13-14 June 2023, following her visit to Brunei Darussalam on 11-13 June 2023, in her capacity as Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) Council President. 

During her two-day visit to Singapore, Vice President Duterte met with Second Minister for Education and Foreign Affairs Mr. Mohamad Maliki bin Osman and discussed ways on how to strengthen cooperation on quality education, including special education. She noted the challenges in the educational system caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and thanked Singapore for its support to the Philippines at the height of the pandemic. 

She also visited the SEAMEO Regional Language Centre (RELC) and was briefed by Centre Director Susan Leong on the scholarship programs and projects of the RELC. Vice President Duterte looked forward to strengthening cooperation with SEAMEO RELC and expressed support for its programs that would create more opportunities for Filipinos to learn and to upskill themselves.

Vice President Duterte also had the opportunity to visit the Temasek Shophouse and met with the leadership of the Temasek Foundation, a non-profit organization under the philanthropic arm of Temasek Holdings, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund. The Foundation supports an array of programs across multiple domains including education. Vice President Duterte thanked the Temasek Foundation for its support to the Philippines through the provision of scholarships, trainings and capacity-building programs. 

Vice President Duterte also paid courtesy calls on Singapore President Halimah Yacob and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. She also met with Foreign Minister Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan where both officials had a good discussion on Philippines-Singapore bilateral cooperation and ways on how to enhance and strengthen it further.

During her visit, Vice President Duterte graced the launch of the Philippine Eagle Aviary at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve where the first two Philippine eagles, Sambisig and Geothermica, from the Philippine Eagle Foundation in Davao City are housed.

As a final activity, the Office of the Vice President organized a meeting with the Filipino Community in Singapore to thank them for their contributions to the Philippine economy as well as for their support during the overseas voting in Singapore in 2022. Vice President Duterte received the highest number of votes for the vice-presidential position with 39,100 votes, translating to 74.34% voters’ turnout. (END)

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