Young Landlady With 11 Properties Raises Eyebrows on Chinese Internet

By Fang Xiao
Fang Xiao
Fang Xiao
December 31, 2012 Updated: January 1, 2013

A Hong Kong reporter has recently exposed the story of a communist official’s 21-year-old daughter, who owns 11 subsidized housing apartments in a relatively poor inland area of central China, where affordable housing purchases are normally limited.

The reporter used a Sina Weibo account named @HongKongSingpaoHenanOffice to announce that the unnamed property holder in Zhengzhou City, Henan Province, is actually a Shanghai resident, and is the daughter of an official at the city’s housing management bureau. 

No names or sources were revealed, but the reporter intimated that more details would be published in the near future.

He said a “Zhengzhou landlady” series would be released on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging service, adding that only partial information will be provided at first in case it gets censored or removed. He said that local government employees have confirmed the accuracy of the information.

On Dec. 28, the Singpao account published the 11 property addresses, and said the mystery landlady’s father has two cars, one of which is a Lexus with the license plate A006XX. 

People’s Daily, a state-run media, denied the report on Weibo, saying the young lady does own 11 properties, but they are not subsidized affordable apartments; nine of them are shops, and two are commercial buildings. The regime mouthpiece added that she is not related to any officials at the Zhengzhou City House Management Bureau.

Chinese Internet users responded positively, mostly on Weibo, to the reporter’s actions. Teng Chaochen, president of the Zhengzhou Boss Headhunting company, posted: “You have my support, don’t hold back!” 

When new Communist Party leader Xi Jinping recently condemned corruption among officials, a rapid sell-off ensued of real estate owned by officials, according to various reports. One netizen said: “Warning! A new trend of corruption—properties are being transferred to relatives!”

Another Weibo user said, “Affordable housing is never available for ordinary people!” 

An anonymous netizen commented sarcastically, “This girl born in the 90’s must be some trading genius! If it was not corruption that made her the owner of 11 apartments at such a young age, then there are probably even darker secrets behind this story.” 

A Guangzhou resident commented, “If she is related to any officials at the bureau, she must be a relative of a retired official, or a relative of some staff member who holds a special post there, or a relative of some official at another bureau.”

Another response said: “Unless she was insane, no girl would buy so many apartments even if she had just won the lottery. These properties must have been transferred to her from a corrupt official. She could be either a relative or a mistress. This definitely has to be investigated. “

A netizen named “LiPaWeiLin” posted: “Is this just going to end with a denial by the authorities? The reporter who exposed this still has more evidence to release; let’s see how long the guilty parties can hide for!” 

A Zhengzhou netizen said: “Which corrupt official would put everything in his name? He could have easily registered his ill-gotten properties under any of his relatives’ names. A thorough investigation will quickly clarify what’s been going on.” 

Another netizen said, “Some people cannot afford an apartment even after working their whole lives, while others can easily buy dozens of them. A government that is unwilling to solve this problem or the reasons behind it, and that simply relies on the policy of limiting housing purchases must either be extremely naive or pretending to be so.” 

Read the original Chinese article.

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Fang Xiao