Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew

Updated: 2015-03-23 04:34


Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew

Lee Kuan Yew (R) attends the launch of his new book on international affairs, at the Istana Presidential Palace in Singapore on Aug 6, 2013.[Photo/CFP]

Political career

A founding member of the ruling People's Action Party (PAP), Lee became prime minister in 1959 when Britain was gradually handing over colonial power to the new local administration. Singapore joined Malaysia in a federation in 1963, but the two split two years later.

The PAP has returned to power in every election since 1959 and currently holds 80 of the 87 seats in parliament.

He stepped down as prime minister in 1990 in favor of his deputy Goh Chok Tong. Goh in turn handed the reins to Lee Hsien Loong in 2004.