Civil Watch’s posters allegedly being torn off

Friday, September 18, 2009
Issue 822, Page 2
Word count: 275
Published in: Macau Daily Times

By Poyi (Natalie) Leung

Civil Watch, one of the 16 lists running for the direct legislative election, claimed yesterday that their publicity posters on the government-designated boards have been repeatedly torn off since the campaign began.

The list, headed by Agnes Lam Iok Fong, held a press conference at their campaign headquarters in the Macau Finance Centre.

Ms Lam said since the election campaign was started on September 5, it was found that Civil Watch’s posters on 11 of the 20 government-designated boards set up throughout the territory were intentionally torn off for multiple times.

“The situation persists even after we put up new posters,” she said.

The candidates also criticised the Electoral Affairs Commission (EAC) for failing to stop the “malicious behaviour”.

“We had immediately notified the EAC regarding this matter, but it’s disappointing to see the situation remains unresolved,” Ms Lam said.

“We believe the posters and government-designated boards are public property and should be protected by the government. Unfortunately the EAC did not take any action to stop the behaviour. It’s a sign of failure to control and protect public property, and a lack of accountability,” she said.

The EAC president Fong Man Chong confirmed yesterday the commission had received a written complaint regarding this matter “from one of the lists” in the beginning of the campaign.

Mr Fong said staff were sent to take photos of the boards where the posters were missing and the “evidence” was then being forwarded to police for further investigation.

“By law it’s a crime to damage the posters intentionally. But whether or not it is a malicious act will need to wait until the investigation is completed,” he added.

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