The history of The Democratic Progressive Party of Singapore dates back to 16 March 1973, when it was first set up and named the United Front. It contested in both the 1976 and 1980 General Elections before being renamed the Singapore United Front on 5 March 1982, and contested again in the 1984 General Elections under this name.
In the 1988 General Elections, members of the party contested under the Workers’ Party banner. In 1990, a team together with Mr Seow Khee Leng officially renamed the party as the Democratic Progressive Party, and subsequently contested in three more General Elections, in 1997 and 2001 as DPP, and in 2006 under the banner of Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA). The party did not contest in the 2011 General Elections.
For 20 years from 1992 to 2012, the party has been kept going by a small team led by Mr Seow Khee Leng, who has contested in four General Elections ever since the very first General Election in 1976 that the party took part in.
In end 2012, Mr Seow invited a group who contested in Bishan – Toa Payoh in 2011 under the Singapore People’s Party (SPP) banner, to join and take over the leadership of the party. Mr Seow and his DPP leaders officially appointed the small group’s leader Mr Benjamin Pwee as the party’s Acting Secretary-General in January 2013. Pwee was confirmed as the party’s Secretary-General on 31 March 2013.
Over the past 40 year history since 1973, members of the party have contested in seven (7) General Elections, winning between 31% to 45% of the votes in 5 out of the 7 General Elections, more than half of the number of elections it contested in since 1973.