Vice-mayor sacked

BEIJING: A vice mayor in a southeastern Chinese  city has been sacked for belonging to a golf club and playing the game  when he should have been working, state media said on Thursday, a move  taken as part of a corruption crackdown.

Golf has come a long way in  China since it was banned as a bourgeois excess by late leader Mao  Zedong, with wealthy Chinese in particular seeing it as a way to affirm  their status.

But it is linked in the minds of many in China with providing  an opportunity for officials to make shady deals away from prying eyes  and being an inappropriate  activity for government employees who are  meant to serve the people and not indulge in such sport.

The official Xinhua news agency said Lin  Chunsong, vice-mayor of Wuyishan in Fujian province, belonged to a golf  club but was paying much less than other members to play. When a  campaign against membership of private clubs for provincial officials  kicked off in 2013, he changed the name of his membership to somebody  else and carried on playing, the report said.

Between June 18, 2013,  and  August 16, 2015, Lin played 163 rounds of golf at his club, twelve of  which were during work hours, Xinhua said, citing a report from the  local anti-graft watchdog. He has now been sacked for breaching  anti-corruption rules as well as clean government rules, the news agency added.