These days, unfollowing somebody on social media is considered the modern equivalent of cutting ties with them. That’s why the media often makes a big deal when it involves two famous people who were previously believed to be getting along (that’s why netizens suspected Show Luo and Grace Chow had broken up long before it was officially confirmed).
The latest relationship to come under scrutiny by virtue of their 'Following' list is that of Laurinda Ho and Mario Ho, the children of late Macau casino magnate Stanley Ho and his third and fourth wives respectively. While the half-siblings appeared to be on friendly terms in the past, sharp-eyed netizens recently noticed that they are no longer following each other on Instagram, leading to speculations of a falling-out.
Many believe that Mario’s Weibo post from last Friday (May 29) might have something to do with it. In his statement, the 25-year-old made the shocking revelation that Stanley tried to get his children, specifically those who aren't exactly academically gifted, into the prestigious University of Oxford by using his wealth and influence.
However, Mario was determined to prove himself, so he deliberately applied to Cambridge — since his father had already made, ahem, donations to Oxford — and was accepted on his own merits. Although he chose to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the end, he proudly stated that he was the first of 16 kids to make Stanley’s Oxford and Cambridge dream come true.
Naturally, the Internet went wild trying to guess which Ho scion had daddy buy their way into university. Some pointed out that Stanley gave a whopping HK$39mil (about S$7mil) to Oxford in 2007, which narrows the suspects down to the children of Stanley’s third wife Ina Chan as well as Mario’s older sister Sabrina since they were all around the typical university-going age then.
Here’s the thing: Sabrina is the only one Mario has defended so far, clarifying that she actually has good grades. This leaves Laurinda, her older sister Florinda, and her twin brother Orlando as the main suspects. While none of them were students at Oxford, Laurinda unfollowing Mario suggests that she may have been less than pleased with him running his mouth like that on a public platform.
Yesterday (Jun 1), reporters approached Mario and Laurinda separately outside the monastery where a ceremony was being held to mark the seven days after Stanley’s passing, but neither of them responded to the queries.