Online fury in China over 92-year-old woman 'kept' in pigsty

The 92-year-old woman, surnamed Yang, has been living in a pigsty "for years" in the southern Guangxi region of China, according to reports.
The 92-year-old woman, surnamed Yang, has been living in a pigsty "for years" in the southern Guangxi region of China, according to reports.PHOTO: WEIBO

Netizens in China have expressed their anger over the treatment of an old woman after photos showing her being kept in a pigsty were shared on social media.

The 92-year-old woman, surnamed Yang, has been living in a pigsty "for years" in the southern Guangxi region of China, according to reports.

Photos have been circulating on Chinese social media of the malnourished woman who was allegedly kept in the padlocked 10 sq m pigsty by her son and daughter-in-law, and slept on a wooden bench, according to the BBC.

Local user Pretty Nan Gualan on the popular video service Miaopai, had posted a video of Yang on Jan 6.

She questioned how the woman's captors could make her live in such conditions without food.

The video has since drawn over 1.8 million views, and viewers expressed their outrage on microblog Sina Weibo, through the hashtag #92YearOldKeptInPigsty, the BBC reported.

Pictures of Yang's malnourished body at a medical check published by Southern Morning Post fanned the flames on Tuesday (Jan 10).

The paper reported that the local hospital was treating Yang, and residents chipped in with bedding and clothes.

However, the woman's son, surnamed Wu, said she had moved into the pigsty on her own accord, as she felt she was a burden to them and "was worried about making the house smell", according to the BBC.

Wu and his wife are suspected of maltreatment, but will not face charges if Yang indeed moved in voluntarily, said the police.

Stories such as Yang's have surfaced on social media in recent months, showing the neglect of elderly Chinese by their children.

According to the BBC, netizens were up in arms in November last year, over a video showing a 62-year-old man collecting rubbish and eating restaurant leftovers. The man from Henan province reportedly did not want to burden his middle-aged daughter.

The case of a 70-year-old female vegetable seller working overnight in sub-zero conditions in northern Jinan province, emerged that same month. She had wanted to help her son get money for a house, reports said.