Two candidates running for the upcoming District Council election have been assaulted in the space of a week whilst they were out canvassing in their districts.

Jocelyn Chau, 23, was attacked on Saturday evening at her booth in the City Garden constituency of North Point. At around 8:15pm, a middle-aged man tore up Chau’s election leaflet in front of her, and punched her in the head twice when she told him not to litter.

“I punch you, so what,” the man said in a video clip of the incident posted by Chau. The man was also egged on by a female companion who said, “Call the police.”

Before leaving, the man threatened Chau that he would return wearing a mask to attack her. Chau was then taken to Ruttonjee Hospital after feeling dizzy and nauseous.

Jocelyn Chau
Jocelyn Chau. Photo: Jocelyn Chau, via Facebook.

Last Tuesday, Jannelle Leung, a 25-year-old accountant who was running for District Council in the Yuet Wah constituency in Kwun Tong, was also attacked.

Leung reported being hit in the back of her head with an unknown object while she was waiting to cross the road. She said she was only able to see a bald man in a green polo shirt walk away, but could not see what weapon was used.

Leung told reporters that she had been harassed via text message and on Facebook, but it did not deter her from campaigning. She reported the incident to the police, and said that she did not suffer major injuries from the attack.

janelle leung
Janelle Leung. Photo: Janelle Leung, via Facebook.

Both Chau and Leung are first-time candidates running in November’s District Council race, with Leung being the convenor of community group Kwun Tong Future and Chau running as an independent.

Sai Kung incident

A third case involving a would-be candidate took place late last month in Sai Kung.

On September 29, Labour Party member Stanley Ho was attacked by four men, leading to fractures and a head wound. Dressed in white and wielding rods, the assailants attacked Ho when he was near Man Yee Playground.

A few days after the assault, Ho announced that he would be running for the Pak Sha Wan constituency in Sai Kung. Ho had previously run for the Indigenous Inhabitant Representative Election, and held anti-extradition law movie screenings in Sai Kung.

Stanley Ho
Stanley Ho hospitalised after being attacked in Sai Kung. Photo: Labour Party.

The Labour Party condemned the attack as “white terror” and said that it was a premeditated crime. Lawmaker Fernando Cheung from the party said that the attacks were connected to triads and targeted pro-democracy figures.

Police said that it received reports of a 35-year-old man surnamed Ho being attacked with sticks and metal rods, leading to injuries to his head and hands. The case has been categorised as “wounding,” and the Wong Tai Sin Criminal Investigation Department was tracking down four men between the ages of 20 and 30.

The 2019 District Elections are set to take place on Sunday, November 24. Campaining is taking place amid widespread protests triggered by a now-scrapped law that would have allowed extraditions to China.

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Holmes Chan is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. He covers local news with a focus on law, politics, and social movements. He studied law and literature at the University of Hong Kong.