June 20, 2011
Yesterday dozens of family members, mostly females and elderly, of low-ranking army officers of the Hong Kongˇ¦s People Liberation Army (PLA) Garrison staged an unprecedented protest outside the Garrisonˇ¦s Chinese logistics headquarters in Shenzhen ˇV the cross-border Chinese city next to Hong Kong.
Protesters claimed that they have not yet got the houses promised by the PLA in the mid-1990s. They accused high-ranking army officers of the PLA of occupying the houses which should otherwise be allotted to incumbent or retired low-ranking army officers. Witnesses affirmed that, soon after the protest began, shield-equipped PLA soldiers rushed out of the headquarters building to take the banner away from the protesters rudely, and several protesters fell into the ground as a result.
A Hong Kong PLA Garrison spokesman later rejected the corruption accusation and described it as groundless. The spokesman said that the PLA has never made the promise.
Understandably, the complainant low-ranking army officers themselves were absent from the rally, because protest is prohibited among PLA servicemen.
A contact told the journalist that corruption within the PLA is deep-rooted and encompassing, and housing is just one of the issues involved.