• Sun
  • Sep 21, 2014
  • Updated: 7:08am
Occupy Central
NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

Anti-Occupy march organisers pledge to investigate ‘cash for taking part’ claims

Organisers of Sunday's protest against Occupy Central promise to investigate reports that some participants were hired to show up

PUBLISHED : Monday, 18 August, 2014, 7:16pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 19 August, 2014, 4:37pm

Organisers of Sunday's march against Occupy Central say they will investigate complaints that people were paid to take part in the protest.

Media reports claimed pro-establishment groups paid some protesters hundreds of dollars each to join the march from Victoria Park to Chater Garden in Central, which the Alliance for Peace and Democracy said attracted 193,000 people. Police put the figure at 111,000.

"It would be better if these people did not show up, as they besmirched the some 190,000 people who came out truly for peace [in Hong Kong]," said the alliance's spokesman, Robert Chow Yung, when asked if the reports would damage the credibility of the march.

Some reports alleged that one group that took part - the General Association of Hong Kong Heyuan Societies - had handed out HK$380 to each marcher.

Chow said he had spoken to the association and learned that one of its subsidiaries "had carried out such acts". The alliance would investigate and consider deducting the 200 people mobilised by the subsidiary from the total turnout, he added.

But it would not for the moment investigate similar claims of payments aimed at the Hong Kong Youth Association.

Cable TV said the Youth Association arranged a bus that picked up dozens of people in Yuen Long, among them the station's undercover reporters, and gave them each a T-shirt and HK$250 on the way to the march.

Chow said the Youth Association questioned the validity of Cable TV's report and said people who received money on the bus were not its members.

Cable TV said it regretted the association's comments. The Youth Association did not respond to the Post's inquiries.

New People's Party leader Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee, who is an adviser to the Youth Association, said: "It's hard to blame [organisers] for offering incentives to marchers, as some people really live quite far away."

But former chief secretary Anson Chan Fang On-sang said it would be best if people could express their views without any behind-the-scenes manipulation.

"There are allegations, that are undoubtedly true, that they have to buy people's participation with money [and] with other inducements. You can see for yourself how much of it is spontaneous reaction … and how much of it is not," Chan said, referring to reports that many who marched on Sunday appeared reluctant to answer reporters' questions.

Chow also brushed off suggestions that he had received money for his role, but said the anti-Occupy Central campaign had spent about HK$10 million.

Zou Pingxue , a law professor at Shenzhen University, said the protest represented the views of many Hongkongers who had kept silent in the past.

 

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This article is now closed to comments

clsaclsa
reach for consensus
josephclwu
Maybe the money were donations for some small home repairs. The persons accepted the donations with the understanding of no string attached. It was a co-incident that donations was made at the anti-OC event. I am sure Anson would come to the defense of the legitimacy of such.
Maybe the money were donations for other political parties that the persons kept temporarily. Apologize for the poor handling of the matter and return the money since that would mean not-a-single-cent had been spent. I am sure Labor Party chairman would deem that to be acceptable.
Maybe the public eyes have a different way to look at these "donations"...
ann.wei.121
"Yes, of course, I fully support the anti-occupy campaign." "Do you know what it is about ?" "Well, that I don't know "
This reminds me of what I saw on TV when asked why she voted for Priscilla Leung Mei-fun, the elderly lady said : Mr.Cheng Li Ming told me so, he gave me rice, he gave me cooking oil, and took me to a feast, just HK$20. I don't know who Leung Mei-fun is.
kctony
Does it really matter what the anti-OC turn-out?
Robert Chow, a respected person in the community, has scored full marks in his loyalty to his master.
caractacus
"Zou Pingxue , a law professor at Shenzhen University, said the protest represented the views of many Hongkongers who had kept silent in the past."
Yes, the ones who took cash, meals, free transport, tourists, children, and any Tom **** and Harry who knew little or nothing about why they signed or marched.
53ae0c69-5e94-4706-924a-743c0a320969
I think if you are honest with yourself or speak to people around you, you would realize there are indeed lots of HKers who are well educated and who signed on their own accord. 80% of my friends on FB have postgraduate degrees and I would say the numbers who are pro and anti OC are just about the same.
caractacus
Whether one is for or against OC, this march and the signature campaign have no credibility.
edwin_hc_lee@yahoo.ca
s
eddiehclee
According to the SCMP Chinese people incapable of thinking for themselves when they express their opinions when it's not for democracy? Which implies Chinese people also have no brain and can't think for themselves unless they want democracy.
So if they reject Occupy central they can only be paid in this case.... right.
jgmoreno
Take your head out of the sand and face reality.
Free transportation, free lunch, cash handouts... these stories were not made up, there are lots of reports from CableTV, NowTV and even ATV News!!
w ww.youtube.com/watch?v=60MD5XCyr3U

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