Democrat's riposte is below the belt

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 08 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 08 November, 2012, 3:25am

Men thinking of criticising Helena Wong Pik-wan, who could become Democratic Party chairwoman, had better watch out if they don't want their manliness questioned. Wong was in acid-tongued form yesterday when asked if she planned to make a formal apology to the NeoDemocrats for her suggestion that they might be closet supporters of a pro-government party, as NeoDemocrat lawmaker Gary Fan Kwok-wai has requested.

"I have apologised [on Facebook] already," she said. "Is he illiterate and [is he] a man?"

It all began when Democrat Donna Yau Yuet-wah lost narrowly to Chiu Man-leong from the Beijing-loyalist Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, in Sunday's Sha Tin district council by-election.

In the small hours of Monday, Wong lamented the loss on Facebook. "Alas, Donna was 45 ballots short and lost to the DAB. Really have to thank the DAB Team B," she said, referring to the NeoDemocrats, who split the pan-democrat vote. "The pan-democrats are [as disunited as] a tray of sand, and there will be no democracy in Hong Kong in the next 100 years." Wong later deleted the post and apologised online after the remark drew criticism from Chan's supporters.

Lingnan professor eyes top Civic Party post

Lingnan University cultural studies professor Stephen Chan Ching-kiu is poised to take over from veteran politician Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee as the Civic Party's internal vice-chairman. Chan confirmed to the South China Morning Post that he is interested in the post, but whether he will take it up is down to his party colleagues at their AGM on December 1.

Chan is a member of the party's executive committee and in charge of its community and social development policies. He is also the academic dean of Lingnan University's faculty of arts. If Chan wins the post he is likely to work with former lawmakers Audrey Eu Yuet-mee and Tanya Chan, who are tipped to become party chairwoman and external vice-chairwoman respectively. Lawmaker Alan Leong Kah-kit is believed to be seeking another term as party leader. "I believe that I will work well with Tanya Chan," Stephen Chan said. "She has devoted a lot of effort in the past [Legco] elections … . so while I hope to boost the party's policy research, we could strengthen our connections with the civic community."

A new brand of green for ex-WWF activist

For many, Hong Kong is not just a city for business but a place to fight for ideals and dreams. This is particularly so for William Yu Yuen-ping, former WWF Hong Kong climate programme chief, who has recently taken up the top post at a newly formed green charity known as the World Green Organisation. Yu has rejected many head-hunting offers but chose to lead the new organisation funded by a local businessman who has extensive investment in the environment. Besides engaging in research, the group also has programmes in places such as Myanmar, Congo and South Africa. An energy expert, Yu will also continue to speak on energy-market issues in Hong Kong including electricity tariffs and the regulatory regime of the city's power duopoly.