SINGAPORE - Former Singapore Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong is recovering after successfully undergoing cancer surgery at a local hospital, his office said Saturday.

Goh, 73, “is expected to make a full recovery as the cancer was localised and detected early,” his press secretary Heng Aik Yeow said in a statement to AFP late Saturday. “He underwent a successful surgery for prostate cancer,” Heng said, adding that Goh would remain at Singapore General Hospital for a few more days for observation. Goh served as prime minister from 1990 to 2004, stepping down in favour of current prime minister Lee Hsien Loong, the son of Singapore’s founding father Lee Kuan Yew.  Goh was drafted by the senior Lee to the People’s Action Party and won a parliamentary seat in 1976 representing the suburban Marine Parade constituency.

 Within a year, he was named minister of state for finance and later held other positions in the ministries of trade, education, and health.

Goh was serving as deputy prime minister when Lee Kuan Yew, now 91, picked him as his successor. Lee served as premier from 1959, when Singapore gained self-rule from colonial ruler Britain, until he stepped down in 1990.