SCMP Saturday, September 9, 2000

Disgraced professor upbeat, says colleague


Professor Cheng Yiu-chung was upbeat, although unhappy, at having had to resign, a fellow professor said yesterday. Professor Bell Yung, who holds the Kwan Fong chair in Chinese music at the University of Hong Kong, said Professor Cheng rang him on Wednesday afternoon to thank him for his support. Professor Yung said he had sought to encourage and console Professor Cheng. "Of course, he is not happy because he has been serving the university for so many years and his service had to be severed all of a sudden," Professor Yung said. But he said Professor Cheng remained "very upbeat" when talking to him.
Professor Yung said Professor Cheng had told him he would go on holiday for one or two months, then make plans for his future. Professor Yung said: "He is at his most productive age and remains so energetic. I don't think he will retire immediately." Professor Yung said one of Professor Cheng's concerns was for his family. "His wife has been unable to go out because reporters are chasing them."
Professor Yung, associate dean of the arts faculty, said Professor Cheng's main concern was the university. Professor Yung wrote to the council in his capacity as a chair professor, urging members not to accept the independent report into the affair.