Life in Brief
Born in Assunta Hospital, Petaling Jaya in 1968, Wong Chen spent most of his early childhood in Kota Bharu, Kelantan. He speaks fluent Kelantanese and considers Kota Bharu as his hometown. He is a middle child; he has an older brother, an older sister and a younger brother. His father is a successful businessman and his mother is a homemaker. Both of his parents are from humble origins and instilled in him the importance of hard work and education.
Wong Chen received his primary school education in Kota Bharu. For his secondary schooling, he was a boarder for seven years in the United World College of South East Asia, Singapore. After which, he studied law at the progressive left-wing School of Law of the University of Warwick, United Kingdom. As a university student, he was a keen supporter of Oxfam, Third World First, Amnesty International and Greenpeace.
After graduating, Wong Chen returned to his hometown Kota Bharu and worked as a lawyer from 1992 to mid-1995. He was then active in the local legal aid bureau, helping the underprivileged, defenceless and rural folks. In accepting his family duties, he moved to Kuala Lumpur and joined the family business in 1995. He discovered that he had a natural understanding for business and eventually transitioned into a corporate lawyer. Over the next 15 years, he specialised in dealmaking, mergers and acquisitions and information technology law.
He rekindled his deep interests in politics, in the aftermath of the Asian Financial Crisis and the sacking of Anwar Ibrahim. As an insider, he had witnessed the obscene excesses of the crony capitalist system. In the ensuing years, he cemented his belief that the path to sustainable economic prosperity lies in social justice and democratic political reforms.
In early 2009, Wong Chen formally joined KEADILAN, and was assigned to head the economics and public policy division. During this period, he worked closely with Rafizi Ramli on many economic reforms and also the Opposition alternative budgets. In 2013, he was elected into office as the Member of Parliament for Kelana Jaya. In 2018 and 2022, he was re-elected but as the Member of Parliament of Subang. Wong Chen was also elected as a member of PKR's Central Leadership Council for 2022-2025.
The Parliamentarian, today.
In Parliament, he has served in the Public Accounts Committee and was the first Chairman of the Special Select Committee on International Relations and Trade. Wong Chen was also the Deputy Chairman of the Special Select Committee on Finance and Economy and serves in the National Recovery Council, on behalf of the Opposition.
At the international stage, he has represented Malaysia in multiple ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) meetings and is a member of the Working Group on Science and Technology of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU). He is a member of the ASEAN Parliamentarian for Human Rights (APHR) and a founding member of an informal group of democratic ASEAN legislators, the South East Asia Community (SEAC).