Media ignore Anita Mui's plea for privacy

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 09 September, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 09 September, 2003, 12:00am

Reporters still stake out the home of the cancer-stricken star

Canto-pop star Anita Mui Yim-fong's dramatic plea for privacy during her battle with cancer last week has fallen on deaf ears, with more than a dozen paparazzi continuing to wait outside her home.

During a quick drive around Shouson Hill the South China Morning Post spotted seven sedans parked outside the diva's flat. The cars contained about 15 reporters and photographers from local newspapers and magazines.

Although the reporters did not reveal their identities, some local media companies admitted to the Post that they had sent people to Mui's residence.

'The whole world's out there now. I don't know what we're looking for yet but we're there,' said a woman from Singtao Daily's entertainment department.

Sources at Oriental Daily News and its sister paper The Sun also said that the newspapers had sent a combined team to the residence.

Last Friday, Mui revealed that she had cervical cancer and issued a plea to local paparazzi to stop stalking her.

She said the presence of media outside her house for the past two weeks had made it impossible for her to go outside to seek treatment.

Bobby Yip Ying-kit, chairman of the Hong Kong Press Photographers' Association, criticised the paparazzi for continuing to stalk the pop star.

'They should respect her, respect the patient. If Mui goes to a public function it's OK to follow her, but waiting outside her home is disrespectful,' he said.

'Even though it's not illegal to wait outside her flat to take photos they should not do so, especially since she has already pleaded for privacy.'

But Mui's plea did manage to convince some publications.

The recently relaunched Eastweek magazine has decided to remove its team from outside her home.

'We just wanted to know if she had cancer,' said Michelle Loo, deputy editor-in-chief of the magazine. 'Now we know, there is no reason to keep following her, there is no need to record her daily life. Besides, there are many ways to find out information. Using paparazzi is just one way - the worst way.'

Apple Daily and Sudden Weekly magazine refused to comment while Three Weekly, Next Magazine and Express Weekly could not be reached for comment.