February 4, 2014 / 11:05 AM / 6 years ago

Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew hospitalised with fever

Singapore's former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew speaks during his book launch at the Istana in Singapore August 6, 2013. REUTERS/Edgar Su

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore’s first prime minister and the man widely credited with the city state’s economic success, Lee Kuan Yew, is in hospital recovering from an infection.

Lee, who turned 90 last September, was admitted on Sunday with a fever and bad cough, according to a statement issued by his press secretary on Tuesday. He is on antibiotics and recovering.

Although Lee has receded from the public and political scene, his health is watched closely as he is still seen as an influential figure for the government of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, his elder son.

The Cambridge University-trained lawyer built the small Southeast Asian island into one of the world’s wealthiest nations during his 31 years as prime minister.

He retired from public life in 2011 when he resigned his cabinet post after the ruling People’s Action Party saw its worst showing at a general election since Singapore gained independence.

“He has been advised by his doctors to avoid public appearances,” his press secretary said, adding that he would not be attending a lunar new year dinner in his Tanjong Pagar constituency on Tuesday evening.

Reporting by Rachel Armstrong; Editing by Robert Birsel

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