Hong Kong’s chief executive-elect Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor paid student helpers on her campaign team HK$100 per hour – three times more than the minimum wage – for running errands and maintaining her Facebook page, sources have told the Post . In an attempt to show she was in touch with the younger generation, Lam engaged young people to be in her team as part of her “We Connect” campaign during her run in the leadership race , and some of them were seen sharing the stage with her at her rally debut in early February. According to the source, there were other university students working on her team behind the scenes as well. They were not volunteers but paid workers at an hourly rate of HK$100. Carrie Lam vows greater role for Hong Kong’s youth The source said there were about 12 students assisting the campaign, and one earned over HK$20,000 within a month – about 33 per cent higher than the average income for new graduates. Meanwhile, public affairs head Sandra Mak was paid a monthly salary of more than HK$100,000. Despite this, Lam’s campaign saw some public gaffes , including one instance where her team drew the ire of many when they said she was “too tired” to visit grass-roots groups in far west Tin Shui Wai. Laurence Li Lu-jen, deputy director of Lam’s campaign office, justified paying the students, saying they worked on many areas, from filing documents to data compilation. “Paying them is a recognised token for their commitments. It is wrong to undervalue our youngsters,” Li said. He added that the other young people at Lam’s rally were volunteers, and no one was paid just to show up at the event. The campaign offices of the other two candidates, John Tsang Chun-wah and Woo Kwok-hing , said they did not recruit any student helpers. But Tsang’s campaign benefitted from the help of some student volunteers, who launched street booths. A core member, Edith Leung, said they did not receive any allowances or payment. Lam, Tsang and Woo have to file their campaign expenses by Tuesday to the Registration and Electoral Office. The limit for campaign expenses for each chief executive candidate was increased to HK$15.7 million from HK$13 million in 2012. Sources said Lam’s expenses were more than HK$11 million. Li declined to disclose further details, but said excess donations received during the campaign were given to charity.