It has just been revealed on social media that founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew’s grandson Li Huanwu’s wedding was attended by his immediate family, including his father Lee Hsien Yang, mother Lee Suet Fern, elder brother Li Shengwu and younger brother Li Shaowu.
Huanwu, who is also current Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s nephew, married his longtime boyfriend Heng Yirui in an intimate ceremony in South Africa, last Friday (24 May). Facebook page ‘Dear Straight People’ revealed this afternoon (28 May) that the immediate families of both men were present at the wedding.
Sharing a photo of the newly married couple and their families, supplied by Huanwu, the page said: “It’s incredibly heartening to see the families of Li Huanwu (the grandson of Singapore’s founding father Lee Kuan Yew) and his partner Heng Yirui, attend their wedding in South Africa! #LoveWins”
Huanwu publicly came out of the closet last year, when he and Heng Yirui were featured in the Out in Singapore platform, which aims to foster acceptance and support for “LGBTQ persons who wish to come out to family, friends and peers in the community.”
Huanwu and his partner can be seen with their arms around each other in portraits shot for Out in Singapore. 31-year-old Huanwu works as a general manager while his 27-year-old partner is a fellow Singaporean who works as a veterinarian.
In the past, Huanwu had also urged Singaporeans to support Pink Dot – an annual event in support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in Singapore.
When he was approached for comment on his nuptials, Huanwu told the South China Morning Post: “I’ll echo my comment I made to Pink Dot – today would have been unimaginable to us growing up. We are overjoyed to share this occasion in the glowing company of friends and family.”
His father, Lee Hsien Yang, told the publication: “I believe my father would have been thrilled to know this.”
The late Lee Kuan Yew was supportive of people in same-sex relationships in Singapore. He consistently stated in interviews his belief that homosexuality is a genetic variance and that homosexuals should not be persecuted.
In perhaps his most famous interview on the topic, Lee Kuan Yew frankly shared his thoughts on homosexuality at a PAP Youth Wing event in 2007:
“This business of homosexuality. It raises tempers all over the world, and even in America. If in fact it is true, and I’ve asked doctors this, that you are genetically born a homosexual, because that is the nature of genetic random transmission of genes. You can’t help it. So why should we criminalise it?
“But there is such a strong inhibition in all societies – Christianity, Islam, even the Hindu, Chinese societies. And we’re now confronted with a persisiting aberration, but is it an aberration? It’s a genetic variation.
“So what do we do? I think we pragmatically adjust…”