A pro-democracy IT professionals group has urged industry workers joining a pro-Beijing industry organisation to give proxy votes to the group in an attempt to occupy seats in the organisation through a “Trojan horse” campaign.

Previously, the group Frontline Tech Workers urged IT professionals to join the Internet Professionals Association (iProA) to gain votes for the IT sector in the Legislative Council election in September and the chief executive election committee on Sunday.

The pro-democracy camp won both elections by a landslide. The group now aims to go one step further to win seats in the iProA’s governing Council at its annual general meeting on December 29.

Trojan horse
Trojan horse. Photo: Frontline Tech Facebook screenshot.

The Council is composed of 21 to 50 members and has a two-year term.

“As a new group concerned about industry issues, Frontline Tech Workers hopes to send representatives to join the election to learn from industry veterans,” it said in a statement. Its post on social media featured an image of the Trojan horse from the 2004 movie Troy.

The current Council includes pro-Beijing lawmaker Elizabeth Quat and IT sector LegCo election candidate Eric Yeung, among other pro-Beijing figures.

iProA has been criticised for offering a HK$50 plan for new members to join in order to obtain more votes in the IT sector elections.

However, Frontline Tech Workers suggested that its supporters – many of whom have been active since the pro-democracy Occupy protests in 2014 – join iProA to qualify as voters, and dismissed doubts that the move may make the pro-Beijing organisation more influential.

chief executive election committee
IT sector winners. Photo: Facebook/Ping Wong.

As of September, voter numbers in the sector have more than doubled compared to last year – sparking concerns that there may be vote-rigging involved.

But the pro-democracy incumbent IT sector lawmaker Charles Mok was re-elected by a large margin, and the pro-democracy group IT Vision won all 30 seats in the sector in the chief executive election committee.

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.