The Straits Times
Published on Dec 06, 2012

China mayor's luxury watch scandal stirs online resentment


BEIJING (AFP) - Photographs of a Chinese city mayor apparently wearing expensive luxury watches have provoked widespread derision online, with some web users comparing officials to watch models.

Mr Yuan Zhanting, the mayor of Lanzhou, the capital of China's relatively poor northwestern province of Gansu, is the latest Chinese official to be accused in social media of wearing expensive timepieces.

An Internet user posted pictures of him wearing a total of five luxury wristwatches, the state-run Global Times said. One of them, an Omega, was worth 150,000 yuan (S$29,400).

Netizen Zhou Lubao posted the images on Sina Weibo - a website similar to Twitter - in protest at the Lanzhou government sentencing a woman to a year of re-education through labour, a local report said.