Disgraced Brian Kan opposes move to use Fanling golf courses for new town

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 21 July, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 21 July, 2013, 3:59am

A long-time resident of Fanling, Brian Kan Ping-chee is opposed to the government's inclusion of the area's golf courses in its controversial development plan for a new town.

Kan lives just opposite the courses, but can no longer play there after the club stripped him of his membership following his vote-bribery conviction in 2011.

"Isn't that discrimination to cancel my membership because I went to jail?" he says.

The expulsion has not stopped Kan denouncing moves to bulldoze the site, although his support is not unconditional.

"[Lawmaker] Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen said the golf course was cheap for all, charging only HK$2,000 per session. This is ridiculous," he said. "It should shift towards serving the general public as well."

This was especially important because the Hong Kong Golf Club was granted a near-monopoly to run the facility, at the expense of public resources, Kan said.

Kan used to spend time golfing and eating at the club. Although he is no longer welcome, golf gear sits next to the door of his home. His son remains a member of the club, he said.

Kan, an indigenous villager, doesn't approve of the government's plan to develop the northeastern New Territories into a new town, which could see non-indigenous villages - many over a century old - being cleared.

"None of the infrastructure is ready. There is serious traffic congestion along the highway [to northern New Territories]."

"What could one do with the [proposed] compensation of HK$600,000? The government needs to be fairer."

Kan suggested developing Pat Heung and Shek Kong where there was more vacant land available for development. "It must not become the 'mainland' way: demolition before compensation," Kan says.

He rarely visits the mainland any more but still has the number plate that Beijing officials gave him hanging alongside his regular "BK 1" on one of his three beloved luxury Rolls-Royce cars.