More than 30 children serenaded Housing Authority officials yesterday with a song highlighting the plight of those awaiting public housing allocation. The children represent about 23,000 of their peers in Hong Kong who live in 'cubicle' homes with their families. About 5,000 are not yet eligible for public housing because they do not meet the seven-year residency rule. Sze Lai-shan, of the Society for Community Organisation (Soco), which co-ordinated the protest at the authority's Homantin offices, said the group was petitioning the government to put children on the priority list along with the elderly for public housing rental. 'They sang about how they are the masters of the future and the pillars of society and yet they are hot and live in cubicles while the secretary and director are enjoying air conditioning,' Ms Sze said. The petition also called for a waiver of rent deposits and the seven-year rule, which requires at least half the family to have lived in Hong Kong for seven years. 'We asked them to allow people to apply for urban area allocation as low-income workers who work in urban areas cannot afford to live too far away,' she said. Ms Sze said a representative who accepted the petition said he would try to help the children, but the Housing, Planning and Lands Bureau said it had nothing to add on the secretary's response to the Legislative Council last month. Secretary for Housing, Planning and Lands Michael Suen Ming-yeung told Legco a waiting time of two years for most cases and one year for some was reasonable.