Government is ignoring Lantau residents' concerns over school

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 14 April, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 14 April, 2010, 12:00am

The supervisor and principal of the Christian Zheng Sheng College on Lantau claim they have had a good relationship with Mui Wo residents for the past 10 years. Relations were good, but that is no longer the case. They also said opposition came from a minority of residents, but I would dispute this claim.

More than over 1,000 south Lantau residents marched to the Education Bureau to protest against Zheng Sheng College's proposed relocation to the vacant school in Mui Wo. They signed a petition asking the bureau to reopen the school for use by Lantau pupils.

A survey last year showed 92 per cent of nearly 900 respondents were against Zheng Sheng college's relocation to Mui Wo and wanted the school to be reopened for local children. This is not a minority.

Most residents welcomed Zheng Sheng guests into the south Lantau community, but this relationship has been damaged by the college insisting that it should take over this school, which the Lantau community badly needs. The college already owns 10,000 sq ft of empty property in Tai O and Cheung Chau. If its need for relocation is so very urgent, why has it rejected 17 individual premises offered by the Heung Yee Kuk?

The college's future relationship with the Lantau community is very much in its hands.

The vacant site in Mui Wo is the only dedicated school building on south Lantau. There have been numerous letters in these columns outlining the obvious need for this school to be reopened. The Lantau community has been ignored and let down by various government departments. Officials have failed to appreciate that the population is rapidly outgrowing inadequate facilities on the island.

Rather than address our problems, they are about to hand over our only and desperately needed local educational facility to a group that already has a wide choice of options.

Who in the present government is representing the needs of this island?

Carrie Lam, Lantau