Relaymedia

New Year Day: HK Churches Rally Against Gambling

A Christian rally is planned for New Year’s day in Hong Kong to make appeals against government plans construct a casino on Lantou Island.
( [email protected] ) Dec 31, 2004 11:50 PM EST

Lantou Island is a naturally formed island of 146 square kilometers, which is considerably larger than both Hong Kong Island and Kowloon. Since the project of casino construction was brought forward by the Liberal Party in a bid to promote tourism and increase the government revenue, the plans has received criticism from other parties, scholarlarly circles, and churches.

The Hong Kong Gambling Watch is now making an appeal on behalf of many groups opposing these plans, arguing that since small gambling dens commonly cause problems to the Hong Kong society; it is not the proper time to build an even larger “gambling den.”

According to a survey conducted by the Hong Kong Gambling Watch earlier this year, 6% of Hong Kong’s youth between 13 and 18 years old have joined soccer gambling, among whom almost 70% started gambling since the government legalized soccer gambling last year.

The Hong Kong Gambling Watch urged the public to take this situation seriously, and asked the government to take action in taking action against the rising of gambling dens.

On New Year's Day 2005, the attendees of “Rally against the construction of the gambling den” will first gather in front of the Wan Chai Methodist Church, then head toward the government headquarters. The Hong Kong Gambling Watch hopes that through this rally, their opposing voice will be heard, and force the government to lay the project of construction aside – therefore stop thousands of tragedies caused by gambling.