Fatal swim for executive, 80

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 06 January, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 06 January, 2010, 12:00am

The co-founder of a locally listed company drowned while swimming in Victoria Harbour off Hung Hom yesterday.

Soo Cho-ling, 80, executive director of Winfair Investment, was spotted in the sea off Tai Wan Shan swimming pool at about 8.30am.

He was pulled from the water unconscious, taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital and declared dead at 9.10am. A police spokeswoman said there were no suspicious circumstances in the incident.

Describing Soo as a good boss, a company spokeswoman said he was a very nice person who treated his employees well. 'He was in good health. Except for Sundays, he came to work every day,' she said.

The company was founded in 1971 and has been listed in Hong Kong since March 1973. With its subsidiaries, it focuses on property development and investing in property and shares, mainly in the city.

According to the company's 2009-2010 interim report, Soo owned 12.5 per cent of the issued shares and his son, So Kwok-leung, who is its non-executive director, owns about 14.9 per cent.

Another of Soo's sons, Benjamin So Kwok-wai, is the company's alternate director and owns about 1.16 per cent of the shares.

Alex Kwok Siu-kit, chief executive of the Hong Kong and Kowloon Lifeguards' Union, said some people, mostly the elderly, swim in the harbour in the morning.

'It's dangerous for swimmers as there are no lifeguards or life-saving facilities there,' he said. 'There are boats travelling in the harbour, which poses a danger to swimmers, and they may be swept away by big waves and strong currents.'

He said over-60s get a concessionary rate of HK$9 at swimming pools run by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.