Storm of protests condemn Tang for pressing ahead

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 22 February, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 22 February, 2012, 12:00am

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Chief executive hopeful Henry Tang Ying-yen's continued scandal-plagued campaign was labelled 'absurd' and 'shameless' yesterday as protesters gathered outside his house and angry callers deluged talkback radio shows.

A caller to RTHK's Millennium programme called Monday 'the darkest day in Hong Kong' when Tang submitted 379 Election Committee nominations to run for the city's top job.

'How can Tang's supporters ignore the feelings of the 7 million people here by supporting such a rogue?' the caller said. Another caller said Tang and his supporters were shameless. 'They ignored Hongkongers' views for their own advantages. I hope Beijing will do something,' the caller said.

About a dozen people gathered in the rain and lit candles outside Tang's York Road mansion in Kowloon Tong last night, after political activist Andrew Shum Wai-nam's online call for the gathering.

Last week the Buildings Department confirmed the existence of an illegal basement of at least 2,250 sq ft at the mansion.

Shum said the house was a symbol of the 'ugly election system' and he hoped the public would voice their anger on the issue. 'We need the public to have more of a voice against the election system. We can't just sit there and watch,' he said.

On Facebook, various groups opposing Tang were created, with several attracting thousands of members. The social networking site is also a popular forum for sharing doctored movie posters, cartoons and pictures poking fun at Tang.

One of the doctored posters - based on the 2011 Hollywood romantic comedy No Strings Attached - showed Tang with Esther Lam, a woman with whom he allegedly had an affair.

The Labour Party said it would hold a protest in front of Tang's mansion on Sunday and called on him to quit the race.