• Fri
  • Jul 25, 2014
  • Updated: 12:37am
NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

Kuk threatens to delay rural land projects

Executive of body warns its 27 committees are preparing to 'wrestle' with the government over support to develop sites targeted for housing

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 18 January, 2014, 3:58am
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 January, 2014, 4:22am

The Heung Yee Kuk yesterday threatened to delay land development in rural areas.

An executive of the rural body made the threat in a meeting with the development chief and professionals, two days after Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said in his policy address that he had secured enough land to achieve his ambitious housing target.

"The government must gain support from villagers in the New Territories," the vice-chairman of the Sai Kung North rural committee, Leung Wo-ping, told Secretary for Development Paul Chan Mo-po.

"All 27 rural committees of the Heung Yee Kuk are planning to wrestle with the government," he warned at a luncheon organised by the Association of Hong Kong Professionals.

"Even if we don't oppose development, it wouldn't do the city's economy any good if we delay the projects for 10 years."

Chan was invited to the lunch to talk about the new measures to increase land supply.

Leung's challenge came as it became clear that much of the land for housing and economic development in the medium to long term would be in rural areas.

The Development Bureau also announced yesterday the setting up of the Lantau Development Advisory Committee to map out economic and social development strategy for the island.

The relationship between the kuk and the government has been souring with several initiatives threatening villagers' interests, including the chief executive's hint of an end to the small-house policy in his election campaign. There is also the government's attempt to include rural land- described as enclaves - into country parks without compensation.

"In the past, the government often engaged us in its discussions…We are rational," Leung said. "The government should improve its relationship with us."

Paul Chan said later the bureau would seek better communications with the kuk.

Secretary for Environment Wong Kam-sing said a new system would be established to strengthen communications with the kuk regarding the enclave issue.

"I think we have always been open to negotiations with the Heung Yee Kuk," Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said after a meeting on political reform with kuk members. She said she hoped the government would continue to win its backing on land development.

Kuk chairman and lawmaker Lau Wong-fat, in a bid to calm the situation, said Leung's comment might be "too rude".

"We should sit down, talk, and see if a policy poses a threat to the people's way of life or health, just like with the Tuen Mun landfill proposal," he said.

Whether the land identified by the government can be rezoned or resumed for housing largely hinges on district support, including that of villagers.

Chan admitted the bureau had failed to rezone four of the 36 government, institute and community sites identified last year for residential use.

But he said the four sites - on The Peak and at Ma On Shan, Sha Tin and Kwu Tung - would provide only 360 units so it would not affect the government's goal of having an extra 470,000 public and private flats built in the next decade.

 

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12

This article is now closed to comments

chaz_hen
Just use kook if you don't want to be censored by SCMP's kiddie filter
DinGao
Good to see all these like-minded comments but what is the local press saying??
John Adams
It is somewhat ironic that whenever commentators type the words Hueng Yee K-u-k it comes out as Heung Yee *** , presumably because k-u-k is too similar to f-u-k in the SCMP's "not suitable for children" filter software.
.
But it's also very appropriate that this happens because what 99% of us in HK actually think about the Heung yee k-u-k is precisely Heung Yee .... F **** K !
phchin
Dear Paul and Government. **** slapped your face. Are you going to turn your other cheek to them? They do not just hurt your face. They want to hurt all people of HK except their own fat males. You should communicate with Mainland and not them, and take away their privilege. Most will support you to do the right thing. And you get my vote 3 years later.
mercedes2233
Will HK people stage a rally to protest against the **** for blocking this housing development? There have been enough criticisms of govt inaction. We should now assist it to do something. If that is not successful, then I would like a 'ting' house too, please.
johnyuan
To mer....
.
I would like to see a rally. But the prospect for one is slim. The 自己顾自己 (for yourself) culture in Hong Kong can’t get a decent size to be united on one issue. This particular issue is about equitability in land distribution for Hong Kong. 50% already own property(s). May be 30% living in cheap government housing. The remaining 20% are those live hands to mouth of the feeblest group which includes the newly arrivals.
.
The protest group if any most likely we already know who they are. They are us who have bothered to make comments and want to see there is light at the end of a disgraceful tunnel.
.
I will advise CY Leung to earn his highest respect in the history of Hong Kong if he will take the bull by the horn and makes the K u k comes to turn to reality. History will stand solidly behind you.
Byebye
It is so obvious there are "discrimination" in favour of certain male babies born in Hong Kong! Are the indigenous people different from us the ordinary Hong Kongers? Are they minority tribe we need to protect?
DinGao
It is high time for the non-indigenous 95% of the populace to call time on the Small Hose Policy unless the right to build a so-called small house is also given to them. If I was a struggling young man or woman with no prospects of owning my own home, getting married and raising a family, I would be outraged at the continuing existence of this discriminatory and divisive policy.
carmeledwin
Heung Yee **** has throughout the years proven itself to be unreasonable and selfish. Time to take away the Ting Uk policy where only MALE villagers can get a piece of land to build a house.
chuchu59
Paul CHAN says he will seek better ties with the K-U-K. Unless you please them by meeting all their demands at the expense of 95% f the population's interests relationships will never be improved. Might as well sever ties with them as they are basically criminals who continuously hold the government to ransom. I happened to pass through the area yesterday where a large bunch of youngsters yelled slogans which was at North Point government building to be exact. To me, they looked to be a bunch of misfits with no clue on what they are doing. Its time to act tough with them.

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