Pan-democratic steward Frederick Fung poised to abandon ship

Fung is believed to be about to declare himself an independent candidate in the Kowloon West by-election, effectively joining the pro-establishment camp in all but name. And the knives are out for him

PUBLISHED : Monday, 11 June, 2018, 12:58am
UPDATED : Monday, 11 June, 2018, 12:58am

Is pan-democratic steward Frederick Fung Kin-kee about to abandon ship and join the pro-government camp? All signs point in that direction.

Certainly the knives are out for the long-time head of the Hong Kong Association for Democracy and People’s Livelihood (ADPL). An op-ed in Apple Daily claimed Fung would publish a memoir next month in which he would spill the beans on the pan-democrats and their “big brother” culture.

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Some prominent opposition figures have launched a pre-emptive strike. Joseph Cheng Yu-shek, a member of the Civic Party leadership and retired political science professor, told listeners on his internet radio show about Fung’s misdeeds and lack of character and loyalty, dating back decades.

“As a general rule, I never attack any pan-democrat,” he said. “But I no longer consider Fung Kin-kee a pan-democrat.”

Disappointingly, there was nothing about mistresses and prostitutes, or money exchanged under the table.

Apparently, Fung would only offer useful information in exchange for something he wanted; or that he would let other people support his election campaigns but wouldn’t show up when it was his turn to help others.

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Some earth-shattering scandal! I dearly hope Fung’s book will offer juicier stuff.

Speaking on another online radio talk show, Andrew To Kwan-hang, the former chairman of the radical League of Social Democrats, said powerful forces were behind Fung’s latest moves. He didn’t say what those forces were but presumably he meant mainland or pro-China forces.

Within opposition circles, it’s widely believed that Fung would leave the ADPL and declare himself an independent candidate in the coming Kowloon West by-election.

That was what everyone was expecting when he called for a press conference last week, but then cancelled it at the last minute. That got the rumour mill going overtime.

Fung was known to be unhappy about being pressured to withdraw from the by-election in March by fellow pan-democrats and is reportedly eager to stage a comeback to the legislature.

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Should Fung put himself forward, he would have no support from the rest of the opposition. In the event that he becomes an independent, he would effectively join the pro-establishment bloc in all but name.

Former pan-democrats have proved to be able to work effectively within the government. Among them are Ronny Tong Ka-wah, who has joined the Executive Council, and Law Chi-kwong, who is now the secretary for labour and welfare. Fung may be next.