Last veteran of Battle of Pasir Panjang dies of COVID-19

War veteran George Hess'e of the Malayan Volunteers Group Australia walks along rows of graves after a remembrance ceremony at the Kranji Commonwealth War Cemetery in Singapore February 15, 2012. The ceremony was held to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the fall of Singapore during World War II. REUTERS/Tim Chong (SINGAPORE - Tags: ANNIVERSARY CONFLICT)

The Kranji Commonwealth War Cemetery in Singapore (PHOTO: REUTERS/Tim Chong)

MALAYSIA – Ujang Mormin, the last survivor of the Battle of Pasir Panjang, has died at the age of 100.

According to Malaysian news agency Bernama, Ujang passed away at the Sungai Buloh Hospital in Selangor at 5.05pm on Tuesday (9 February), due to COVID-19.

His grandniece Lailawati Jamil, 59, reportedly said that the World War II veteran was admitted to hospital on 26 January after testing positive for the coronavirus. She was informed on 6 February that he was in critical condition.

"He had, prior to this, expressed his longing to meet relatives and friends, as if he knew the time had come, but due to the current COVID-19 situation, we could not visit him."

The Health Ministry is taking care of the funeral arrangements, with Ujang likely to be interred at the Royal Malay Regiment Cemetary in Port Dickson.

Ujang hails from Kampung Kundur, Rembau. He served as an army private with the First Battalion of the Royal Malay Regiment (1RAMD), after joining the British Army in 1939. In 1941, he was deployed to the Gap Ridge in Singapore.

From 12 -15 February 1942, he fought against Japanese forces alongside legendary war hero Lieutenant Adnan Saidi at the Battle of Pasir Panjang.