After witnessing a desperate migrant worker seeking wages owed to him by the local government protest by drinking pesticide, the vice mayor of a county in Yunnan showed himself to be not the most compassionate of officials by chuckling and suggesting that if all the petitioners did that and died then things would be much easier.
Pictures of the encounter were posted by a netizen onto Weibo and they don’t look good for the official’s career prospects. One day last week, migrant workers arrived at the county government compound in Zhaotang Town, Qiaojia County in Yunnan Province to negotiate with government officials about all the wages that the local government owed them but refused to pay. They were arguing with the county’s vice mayor when one protestor decided that he needed to do something drastic in order to get results and drank pesticide right in front of the official.
The initial result probably wasn’t what the worker was hoping for. The vice mayor was all smiles, laughing that if they all petitioned by killing themselves then the matter would be much easier to resolve. The county owes more than 1 million RMB in salary to 100 workers for construction projects, according to NetEase.
Fellow workers and officials helped to rush the man who drank pesticide to a local hospital. His daughter said her father is now in stable condition and that she wants to take him to Kunming for further treatment.
Earlier this year, seven people from Jiangsu drank pesticide in front of the Beijing office of China Youth Daily protesting the demolition of their homes.
[Images via NetEase]