News

Who is Vincent Wijeysingha?

Dr Vincent Wijeysingha was unveiled as a candidate for the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP), contesting in the Holland-Bukit Timah GRC in the 2011 General Election.

The 44-year-old civil activist, whose father Eugene Wijeysingha was a former principal of Raffles Institution, had lived in England for 16 years studying social policy and practising social work.

Dr Wijeysingha returned to Singapore in 2009 and in the following year joined Transient Workers Count Too, an organisation that helps migrant workers, as executive director.

He made waves by being the first Singaporean politician to come out as gay last July.

He had posted on Facebook that he will be attending the Pink Dot SG event that year, and added: "And yes, I am gay."

His sexuality and SDP's stand on homosexuality became an issue during the election with the People's Action Party (PAP) questioning if Dr Wijeysingha or the SDP had a gay agenda.

His move had been taken to be a sign that Singaporean society is progressing to be more liberal, with even PAP MP Baey Yam Keng praising Dr Wijeysingha for his courage. However, Dr Wijeysingha soon announced his retirement from politics via Facebook in August last year.