A Pro-Beijing group has been accused of handing out free supermarket coupons to entice people to attend a rally for pro-Beijing Kowloon West by-election candidate Rebecca Chan. She has denied any involvement in the incident.
Pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong shared screenshots on his Facebook page of an alleged WeChat group of Yantai people based in Hong Kong. They were connected to the Hopeh and Shantung Natives (Hong Kong) Association – a group made up of Hebei and Shandong people residing in the city.
In the messages, Kong Wei, who claims to be a City University of Hong Kong PhD student, said that the association planned to host a rally for Chan on November 13 in Sham Shui Po. He urged young people to join and said that “participants will receive [HK]$500 worth of Wellcome coupons.”
多一些鼓勵 全力以赴 支持5⃣號陳凱欣 11月13日（周二）晚上 6 時至 8…
City University’s website suggests that Kong is indeed a student at the school.
A person named Wong Ka-wai then replied with muscle-flexing emojis. Wong’s name matches the name of one of the Association’s directors.
Chan’s team said in response that it did not know about the messages and was not involved. They added that the association was not invited to the rally.
HKFP has contacted Kong for comment.
Joshua Wong told HKFP the screenshots were sent to him via the Telegram messaging app.
“It is not surprising to see alleged election bribery among the pro-Beijing camp,” he said. “We can see that Hong Kong’s civilised election methods have been constantly interfered with by Beijing. I urge Hong Kong not to vote for Chan.”
Democratic Party lawmaker Lam Cheuk-ting told Apple Daily that it is illegal for anyone to provide rewards to elicit votes for a certain candidate: “It is very certain they are finding people to support Chan by telling people to attend a rally – this is direct evidence,” he said.
Other candidates for the November 25 by-election for the Kowloon West geographical constituency include Lee Cheuk-yan, Fung Kin-kee Frederick, Ng Dick-hay and Tzeng Li-wen Judy.