Migrant worker detained in China over song about man being beaten by officials

Alice Yan
1 / 2
Migrant worker detained in China over song about man being beaten by officials

A migrant worker in Guangdong was detained in Yunnan province for two weeks for song lyrics he posted on social media two years ago describing the beating of a man by government officials.

Huang Ming was taken from his dormitory at a factory in Heyuan, Guangdong, by two officers who had travelled more than 1,000km from Yunnan’s Zhenxiong county early this month, the Yunnan.cn news portal reports.

Huang, who is from Zhenxiong, was put into custody in the county on a charge of picking a quarrel and making trouble, the report cited an official from the local Public Security Bureau as saying.

A document issued by county police said Huang broke the law by writing song lyrics based on the incident in 2017 and posting them on the WeChat social media platform in July of that year.

An article on Huang’s WeChat account said he wanted to find a singer for the song. He also said he was planning to make a video including the lyrics and footage of the incident, in which government officials beat a county resident.

“Shovels and hoes, government officials picked them up to hit Long Anyou,” the lyrics read. “Long Anyou got his ribs broken and head bleeding. Officials are like bandits and just left in a car after the attack.

“We Zhenxiong residents should be united so that the main culprit behind this attack can be found. We cannot stand being bullied without rebelling again. Zhenxiong is so full of corruption that I can’t bear it any longer.”

No smoking, no tattoos, no bikinis: inside China’s war to ‘clean up’ the internet

In early July 2017, Long fought with more than 10 county government officials after a row erupted because he rode his motorbike over freshly painted traffic markings on the road, according to the report. Long had several ribs broken in the fight.

Police investigated the incident and the officials involved – who later paid Long 450,000 yuan (US$67,000) in compensation – were punished, the report said.

Huang put the lyrics on WeChat more than a week later.

At the end of last month, the county’s internet content management office summoned 14 WeChat public account owners who live in the region for a talk. Officials told them “not to damage the online atmosphere in the name of supervising the government”.

Huang was placed in detention on April 2 and released on Tuesday.

He said his lyrics were a satirical take on officials’ violation of the law.

“On the afternoon of April 16, the officer who caught me in Guangdong asked me if I would release such content in future,” the report quoted Huang as saying. “If I release them again, they will arrest me again, he said.”

Huang told news website Thepaper.cn on Thursday that he did not regret his actions.

More from South China Morning Post:

This article Migrant worker detained in China over song about man being beaten by officials first appeared on South China Morning Post

For the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. Copyright 2019.