Nanjing man protests forced demolition on outdoor billboard

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 31 July, 2013, 2:01pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 31 July, 2013, 2:27pm

A Nanjing man whose house was torn down by local government officials vented his anger on an outdoor advertising billboard near a city highway this weekend. The protest lasted a day before it was located and pulled by government officials on Monday.

“The Nanjing government secretly demolished my house, when will it be returned to me?,” read the bold characters on the billboard.

Zhang Haishan, producer of the billboard protest, told China’s Southern Metropolis Daily that he rented out his house to the city’s housing demolition department - the government body that oversees demolitions to meet Nanjing’s development plans - for office use in 2009. He was shocked after finding out in 2010 it had been knocked down by his tenant.

Officials in Nanjing said the house was taken down by mistake  and accused Zhang of demanding an unreasonable compensation fee, according to the daily.

Zhang said he was further mortified when Nanjing officials told the State Bureau for Letters and Calls - where Zhang had been petitioning his case - that he had agreed to a compensation scheme they offered. Zhang said despite the local government’s claim, he had never signed any agreement.