Two legal-sector candidates for the Legislative Council election exchanged fire yesterday over their alleged links with the mainland. Both insisted they were pro-democracy candidates.
The encounter between former Law Society president Albert Wong Kwai-huen and Civic Party barrister Dennis Kwok Wing-hang came on an RTHK radio forum after a caller asked Kwok about a Peking University study tour he attended in 2009.
Kwok answered that he attended the tour because he was recommended by a senior counsel from the Bar Association, and he believed it was important "to listen to different voices from different angles".
Wong, who is keen to dismiss his image as a pro-establishment candidate, said he had never been invited to take part in any mainland study tour.
"Attending a course about Chinese affairs is no big deal," he said. "I only wonder why you [Kwok] did not tell us in the first place."
He also questioned Kwok's integrity after Kwok reiterated that he did not know any officials from the central government liaison office in Hong Kong, while representatives of the office were involved in the Beijing tour.
Hitting back, Kwok accused Wong of mixing up facts and negative campaigning. "I have no personal friendship with anyone [from the liaison office]," he said. "And it is completely different from your private dinner with top officials from the office two months ago, in which you even discussed the Legco election."
Kwok said he believed voters in the legal sector "will be wise enough to distinguish between important and trivial matters" and make the right choice on September 9, when the election will be held.
Meanwhile, pastor and New Territories West independent candidate Chan Yut-wah has received the backing of more academics, including Benny Tai Yiu-ting, law professor at the University of Hong Kong, and Professor Kang Phee-seng, former head of Baptist University's department of religion and philosophy.
He was already supported by Professor Eric Cheung Tat-ming, assistant law professor at the University of Hong Kong.
Other New Territories West candidates include Leong Che-hung, Alice Mak Mei-kuen, Josephine Chan Shu-ying, Albert Chan Wai-yip, Mak Ip-sing, Lee Wing-tat, Kwok Ka-ki, Michael Tien Puk-sun, Ho Kwan-yiu, Leung Yiu-chung, Chan Han-pan, Chan Keung, Lee Cheuk-yan, Tam Yiu-chung and Tsang Kin-shing.