Unsung hero deserves more respect, activists say

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 06 October, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 06 October, 2011, 12:00am

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The government has been disrespectful towards lesser-known revolutionaries, such as little-known martyr Yeung Kui-wan, in the new 1911 commemorative garden that memorialises Dr Sun Yat-sen, some activists say.

Visiting three sites to honour Yeung - who was assassinated in the city in 1901 for seeking to overthrow the Qing dynasty - on the Chung Yeung festival, they said Yeung deserved greater recognition.

Yang Rong-hua, a member of the dozen-strong Committee to Commemorate Martyr Yeung Kui-wan, said the garden in Pak Tsz Lane, Central, should be dedicated to Yeung instead of Sun, who is revered as the father of modern China.

'Yeung has been buried by history, and we want to uncover him and return the truth to history,' Yang said.

Pak Tsz Lane is especially significant for Yeung, as it is where he and other Western-educated revolutionaries who formed the Literary Society for the Promotion of Benevolence in 1892 met secretly to plot the overthrow of the Qing dynasty.

A student at the time, Sun founded the Revive China Society, which merged with the Literary Society in 1895. It was renamed Hong Kong Hsing Chung Hui, and Yeung was elected as its first president.

'If we talk about the Chinese custom of respecting one's elders, then Yeung should be recognised because he was Sun's elder,' local resident Chan Sik-yan, who was visiting Pak Tsz Lane with his family, said.

Yeung's nephew, Yeung Hing-on, said the garden should be named after the Literary Society.

'Naming it after the street doesn't do justice to its historical significance,' he said.

The site of Yeung's assassination by Qing authorities in Gage Street, beside Pak Tsz Lane, is commemorated by a marker on the Sun Yat-sen Historical Trail. The committee laid a bouquet of flowers to mourn Yeung and 6,348 unnamed martyrs of the 1911 revolution.

A photograph of a recently erected plaque on Yeung's tomb has been included on the trail marker, which the committee hopes will draw attention to the revolutionary.