Golf carts were used to stop protesters from gaining access to Fanling golf course yesterday, as the Labor Party protested outside the controversial site and demanded that it be used for housing.

The golf course closed its main door and barricaded its entrance with buggies to prevent a repeat of an earlier protest when activists ran on to the course.

On Saturday, about 20 activists from several groups, including the Concerning Grassroots’ Housing Rights Alliance and League of Social Democrats, stormed into the golf course premises after clashing with security guards.

Yesterday, about 10 people from the Labor Party protested at the entrance to the course. They put a public housing cardboard model and photos of children living in subdivided flats in front of the Hong Kong Golf Club logo at the entrance.

The protesters later handed in the model to a golf course representative.

There have been calls for private recreational lease sites, including the 170-hectare course, to be better utilized due to the housing shortage.

The current lease allows the city’s 66 charity and private recreational venues to be leased at nil or a nominal premium. The government suggested in a consultation paper last month that the Fanling course, along with the city’s 38 other private sports clubs, should pay one-third of the market value of the land premium starting from 2027.

However, the suggestion was criticized by various political parties.

Steven Kwok Wing-kin, chairman of the Labor Party, said the government’s suggestion of a levy showed it is not determined to solve the housing problem.

“We demand the government take back the golf course immediately and build over ten of thousands public housing flats,” he said.

Kwok quoted Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, who earlier asked: “Children living in subdivided flats cannot speak for themselves. Who speaks for them?”

He said: “We want to tell her: Labor Party will speak for them!”

資料來源: 英文虎報 | 2018-04-03 報章 | P06 | Local | By Stella Wong Golf carts block Fanling protest

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