Malaysian actor Yap Chin Fong, who made a name for himself in the popular comedy Empat Sekawan, has passed away due to complications from diabetes on Saturday (Nov 20). He was 74.

Yap, or Uncle Fong as he was fondly known in the industry, wasn’t part of the original cast of Empat Sekawan when the comedy premiered in 1968.

“I might have joined the cast later, but they quickly made me feel at home. Before long, I was part of the happy family,” Uncle Fong told StarLifestyle in a 2015 interview.

He played one of the children on the multi-dialect series which ended its run in 1988.

Late actress Datuk Lai Meng, who was also present at the “reunion” interview, said that Uncle Fong was just a teenager when he joined the cast.

“We used to call him sai lou gor (little kid), as he was only in his teens when he joined the cast. Now, I still think of him as a kid as he is much younger than me,” said Lai Meng.

Lai Meng passed away at in 2018 at the age of 90.

Uncle Fong was a recipient of NTV7’s Golden Awards’ Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012. He was also honoured with the Anugerah Tokoh Seni YA1M (1Malaysia Artistes Foundation) the following year.

He leaves behind a wife and two children.

Datuk Lai Meng and Yap Chin Fong at the 'Empat Sekawane reunion shoot with 'The Star' in 2015. Datuk Lai Meng and Yap Chin Fong at the ‘Empat Sekawane reunion shoot with ‘The Star’ in 2015.

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