Thu, Jan 16, 2003 - Page 2 News List

Fortuneteller takes son to court over broken pledge

DPA , TAIPEI

An elderly fortuneteller is taking his son to court after his son broke a promise to give his father NT$7,000 a month when he could no longer look after himself, a Chinese-language newspaper reported yesterday.

Ho Jung-hua, 68, predicted 10 years ago that his four children would abandon him, so he made his eldest son, Kuo-ching, pledge to give him NT$7,000 each month when he grew old.

But Kuo-ching failed to honor the pledge, and Jung-hua, who is nearly blind and suffers from diabetes, is suing him.

During a court hearing, Kuo-ching said he broke his word because his father used to beat his mother, forcing her to get a divorce.

"That's why he is living alone. My mother lives with me and my family. My mother would not allow me to take in my father," Kuo-hsing said. "I cannot give my father money because I am not employed full-time and have difficulty supporting my own family and my mother."

Jung-hua said he learned fortunetelling when he was small and for years worked to support his family by reading the fortunes of more than 100 people every day.

"Ten years ago, I predicted that my children would abandon me when I grew old, so I made Kuo-ching sign a paper, saying he would give me NT$7,000 every month until I died," Jung-hua said.

"But despite my fortunetelling ability, I did not predict that my son would break his word and that I would take him to court," the paper quoted him as saying.

"Now that I am old, suffer from diabetes and have bad eyesight, I need my son's support," he said.

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