Chief executive-elect Carrie Lam’s victorious vote count of 777 in Hong Kong’s small-circle leadership election on Sunday has inspired obscene Cantonese puns.

The Cantonese word for “seven” is phonetically similar to an obscene word meaning “penis.” Thus “penis penis penis” began trending online shortly after the results were announced. As a verb or an adjective, the word also refers to “stupidity” or a “blunder.”

Cantonese-speaking reporters at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre – where the election was held – were heard laughing as the figure was read by Electoral Commission officials.

Lam appeared hesitant as her number of votes was announced. Questioned by reporters later, she said: “You reporters always exaggerate my facial expression.”

Photo: Apple Daily screenshot.

Rita Fan, the staunchly pro-Beijing former president of the Legislative Council, however, said that 777 was a “lucky number.”

‘365 days’

Defeated rival John Tsang, who received 365 votes, also bore the brunt of memes. “He is lazy 365 days a year, and that’s why he got 365 votes,” read a message circulating on Whatsapp.

#我真係恭喜你呀#大家有個好撚柒特首#柒柒柒#永恆的柒

Posted by 豬屎新聞 Juicy News on Saturday, 25 March 2017

In 2012, the number of votes received by Lam’s predecessor, incumbent Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, stuck with him as a nickname for his entire team. He received 689 votes.

File photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP.

The other candidate, Woo Kwok-hing, received 21 votes.

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