• Fri
  • Dec 26, 2014
  • Updated: 1:46am
Leung Chun-ying
NewsHong Kong

'Silent majority' reluctant to say why they back CY amid report of handout

Many respond 'no comment' to questions about their motivations amid report of cash handouts

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 02 January, 2013, 6:11pm


  • Yes: 74%
  • No: 26%
2 Jan 2013
  • Yes
  • No
Total number of votes recorded: 559

Marchers opposed to Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying were eager to declare their reasons for protesting, but many of the thousands who turned out to support the administration were reticent.

Several participants replied "no comment" when asked to explain their endorsement of Leung at a morning march from Central to government headquarters and at a carnival-style rally at the same venue in the afternoon.

An investigation by Chinese online news portal The House News, which sent reporters undercover to join the rally, suggested one possible motivation - cash handouts of HK$250, given to those taking part in the morning event by an operative hiding inside a portable toilet. The New Territories Association of Societies, one of the co-organisers, said it had filed a complaint with police over the pay-to-protest allegation.

Executive Councillor Cheng Yiu-tong, convenor of march organiser Hong Kong Celebrations Association, said: "The attendants are the silent majority, and we hope society will move forward, prosperously."

Patrick Ko Tat-pun, convenor of the afternoon rally, said he intended to counter "China- and Hong Kong-hostile" mobs. He said a row over illegal structures at Leung's home, which fuelled attempts by the pan-democratic camp to impeach him, was a "trivial matter".

Both organisers said Leung should be given time to focus on policy implementation and criticised pan-democrats' attempts to obstruct the administration.

Slogans were chanted, placards raised, and national and Hong Kong flags waved, but not all of those in attendance were as certain of their backing for Leung as their leaders.

Retired civil servant Wong Wing-sun said he joined the rally to "support the government, support China", stopping short of mentioning Leung.

Warehouse worker Ming Chuen-hoi said: "I came here only because I'm sick of pan-democrats, who basically oppose everything the government proposes."

One Mrs Wong, who joined the morning march, said: "I support CY." When asked why, she replied: "No comment."

Liu Wing-man, waiting under the flag of the Beijing-loyalist Federation of Trade Unions, said: "We're all Hongkongers. We should unite to support the chief executive."

Tim Lau, 60, said: "Many livelihood issues must be solved by CY now, and no obstruction [by pan-democrats] is acceptable."

Marchers whom the Post spoke to denied they had been offered incentives to take part - such as cash gifts or free meals - and insisted they were "self- motivated".

The House News said its staff and other marchers were handed cash by a worker in the portable toilet. Earlier, pictures posted online showed messages delivered over popular mobile chat-application WhatsApp recruiting "paid workers" to march.

Cheng reportedly dismissed the website's accusations and accused "opposition camps" of a smear.


For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive



This article is now closed to comments

I would add replace the word majority with imbecile....
Dai Muff
Who needs fruit money or old age pension when you can earn $250 a day by protesting?
Dai Muff
Yes. These are photographs and video. Maybe they just needed help in there eh?
Next excuse.
Culture Vulture - i don't disagree but a more orderly phase out would do wonders so if it's 2017, then it's 2017. We don't want need a Egypt type scenario.
Even if there had been cash payout, voting with one’s feet for money would be expression of direct democracy, an improvement from the indirectness practiced in the US where democracy works thru the troubles of lobbying, corporate donations, propaganda, and votes.
Is there much difference between Americans who enlist for patriotism and those for money, when they randomly kill in the "Middle East"?
Who wants “democracy” if it brings poverty and not wealth, in realistic monetary terms?
Is the democracy in Greece, Ireland, and India more honorable than CCP’s noblese oblige?
Self-styled “democrats” in HK are mostly
the pretentious,
those spinally active but cerebrally feeble,
the narrow and/or simple-minded,
idlers who don’t want to do REAL work
hypocrites who can profiteer from troubles
unrealistic dreamers trying to cut corners
navel gazers and religious freaks with neither constructive hobbits nor meaningful social connections.
Self-serving hypocrites who lasciviously welcome seduction are foolish if they pretend holier-than-thou and condemn prostitution.
Only a few thousand took to the street.
This means HK can rely on good citizens who’re neither self-gratifying political seducees nor political prostitutes.
Dai Muff
"The more rabble rousing there is, we're showing that we cannot handle universal suffrage " Give us it and let us try. What people are showing right now is they cannot handle dictatorship-imposed leaders they don't trust. Different thing entirely.
like they did in, Egypt? Thailand? Yes, Thailand is the best example. A legal elected prime minister overthrown by protesters (and military coup). Then later Thaksins supporters (actually in the majority) took the streets and what happened? the military shut those down.
You can "try" in your own playground with your own playing group. You try it with HK and you will get decades of slow downs, turmoils and economic recessions. Damages then nobody can solve for years to come. The first ones who will leave HK as a sinking ship are those who yelled the loudest at the protests. We agreed in 2017, so let it be 2017. Or what you are afraid of?
Well said.
Give the guy a chance to actually be the Chief Executive. Shouldn't care if you love him or hate him. There's plenty of people who can't stand Obama but you have to give your country leader a chance. The more rabble rousing there is, we're showing that we cannot handle universal suffrage and that reflects poorly on all of us. Let's be more civilized already. Plus there's way more problem areas to solve than to worry about lying about structures in a home.

As usual the SCMP reportage is abashedly biased. They think we readers are a bunch mop heads that can be easily brainwashed. You noticed the influencing headlines of course. ANTI-CY PROTESTERS EXPLAIN WHY THEY TOOK TO THE STREETS (denoting honesty, straightforwardness - perfect HongKongers of the pan democrat crowd) & 'SILENT MAJORITY' RELUCTANT TO SAY WHY THEY BACK CY AMID REPORT OF HANDOUT with “silent majority” in parenthesis meaning they are not what they claim (falsehood) & quoting a rumour which is obviously an unsubstantiated accusation made by the opposition. It takes a lot of time & money to organize a protest with banners, adverts/notification to rally supporters etc. With the pan democrats demonstrating weekly or more (practically about the same thing), it’s a wonder where they get the monetary backing & crowds to do so? Volunteering for nothing is not a Hongkonger’s strong point.



SCMP.com Account