Singapore President Quits, Admits He’s an Alcoholic

United Press International

President C.V. Devan Nair resigned as Singapore’s third head of state, admitting that he had become an alcoholic and that he had deceived the prime minister for a year about his drinking problem, Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew announced today.

Lee told a hushed gathering of 79 members of Parliament that he was not aware of Nair’s alcoholism when he nominated him to the largely ceremonial post in October, 1981, but that the diagnosis had been confirmed by a panel of five medical specialists.

Nair, 61, “shows an impairment of judgment and insight and diminished self-control and sense of responsibility,” due to “alcohol superimposed on a longstanding condition caused by alcohol dependency,” the doctors decided, Lee said.

“The president’s mental state at present fluctuates between lucidity and mild confusion and disorientation,” Lee said.