Chinese megastar Fan Bingbing has published her first Weibo post since issuing an apology for tax evasion on October 3. The post, which was uploaded to the microblogging website on November 17 at 11.20pm, is a repost (it’s not a retweet if it’s not Twitter, is it?) of a Central Communist Youth League (@共青团中央) post promoting China’s sovereignty and opposing Taiwan independence. See the post below:
A rough translation of the text used by the Communist Youth League, and reused by Fan, reads: ‘China is no less than this! #Ideeplylovethiscountry.’ Screengrab via Fan Bingbing/Weibo
Fan’s repost has been shared over 97,000 times since being published and received over 240,000 likes. (While these numbers seem high, it’s worth noting that the Central Communist Youth League’s original post has been shared over 15 million times). It was published immediately after the Gold Horse Awards (dubbed the Chinese Oscars) held on the same night in Taipei, where Fu Yue, winner of the best documentary award, used her acceptance speech to question the longstanding ‘One-China Principle.’
Netizens have, predictably, taken to the comments section to express their patriotism. At the time of publication, Fan’s post had generated over 81,000 comments.
Fan disappeared from the public eye over the summer after being outed for tax evasion by well-known TV personality Cui Yongyuan. During her stint as a missing person, Fan did not post on Weibo from July 23 until October 3, when she issued an apology on the platform for her misdeeds.
“In terms of a series of punishment resolutions by the Tax Bureau, I totally accepted all of them, and will raise funds to compensate tax and penalties regardless of any obstacles...” reads Fan’s apology, as translated by Patrick Wong and Sijia Jiang. “In the aftermath of this overhaul, I believe I can follow regulations, pay attention to order and take the burden of responsibility... Without the Party and the state's good policies, without the love from the people, there would have been no Fan Bingbing.”
As punishment for her crimes, Fan was ordered by Chinese tax authorities to pay penalties totaling to nearly RMB884 million (USD129 million) by an undisclosed deadline. Failure to pay the fines in the allotted time could result in criminal charges being issued for Fan.
[Cover image via @bingbing_fan/Instagram]