Growing problem

PUBLISHED : Friday, 09 November, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 09 November, 2001, 12:00am

There have been letters in these columns in the past regarding the increasing incidences of graffiti on our streets. Unlike other parts of the world, this has been a fairly modest problem in Hong Kong.

No doubt the authorities have investigated, although it is fair to assume that due to the anonymity of the act, the success rate of detection is not high.

Let me help here. Over the last few days there have been six acts of graffiti in Chung Hom Kok where the artist has left a clue as to his identity - a mobile telephone number in clear 15cm-high numbers on the wall. The number is a contact point for whatever service is being advertised.

In an earlier incident a few weeks ago when a drain-cleaning service was being advertised on a slope at the roadside, the Highways Department acted promptly and arranged for the offending message to be painted over and the matter reported to the police.

These are not isolated incidents. Driving around Hong Kong one can see many examples of similar advertising and these acts of vandalism where the culprit can be easily identified, need to be acted upon quickly and the offenders suitably reprimanded.

As far as I can establish, the Highways Department can only act when the issue relates to roadside slopes under its control, but there are many others which do not fall under its jurisdiction.

Could the relevant authority provide some guidance as to how members of the public can go about reporting such incidents and what action has been taken to date to curb this problem?