Wednesday, 22 October 2014

The Occupy Saga Continues

The Federation of Students who debated government officials last night
Today everyone was still talking about the debate between the students and government officials last night. Many remarked how good the students were. Can we put this into perspective? What were you doing when you were 18 years old? Since when have you seen teenagers debate adults more than twice their age with intelligence and passion?

It dawned on me this evening that no one knew the debate would happen after 25 days of occupying the three protest sites. Who knew the protests would last this long? Everyday has brought with it a roller coaster ride of drama and we haven't had time to even catch our breath.

Today there were more developments. It took more than 24 hours for locals to pick up on Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying's comments to foreign media that if candidates were nominated by the public then the poor would dominate the electoral process. He claimed that meant more than half the population made less than $1,800 (HK$13,964) per month would dominate the political agenda...

A truck collects stuff used to create barricades in Mongkok
Despite the delay, poverty groups quickly organized and about 100 people marched to Government House where Leung resides to protest his remarks. They didn't even apply for a protest march license, but the police let them make their way there anyway. One police officer even helped push a wheelchair up the hill.

And then this afternoon the Taxi Drivers and Operators Association tried to execute its court injunction in Mongkok, reading out the legal letter and then began to take down the barricades and removing the materials with a large truck with a crane.

However, as protesters tried to stop them, scuffles ensued, and police had to get in between the two parties and hold each other back. Eventually the taxi group retreated and said it would have a rethink about how it would take back the street legally.

But this evening things got ugly when someone threw three glass bottles of paint thinner at protesters standing near the supply station, and then tried to set fire to the supplies but was stopped in time. Then there were four bags of a mixture of faeces and oil thrown at protesters from a nearby building. Will police investigate?

One of the many civil sservant ID cards photographed
Other drama includes the revelation that there is a Facebook page that was only set up on Monday for civil servants who support the Umbrella Movement. Called "Civil Servants Support Umbrella", there were about 1,500 signatures to counter another group called Government Employees Association and Hong Kong Civil Servants General Union who denounced the movement.

There are many photographs on the Facebook page showing people's staff cards showing titles, but blocking out the names. They come from various departments including the judiciary and police...

But finally -- the biggest news of all was that jazz saxophonist Kenny G is in Hong Kong and he was photographed visiting the protest site at Admiralty. On his Twitter account there was a picture of him with the words: "In Hong Kong at the sight [sic] of the demonstration. I wish everyone a peaceful and positive conclusion to this situation".

Immediately there was speculation -- as Kenny G is a very popular musician in China -- would be allowed back into the mainland to perform.

Kenny G gives the protest his blessing
This afternoon Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying was asked to comment on his appearance at Admiralty.

"I think Kenny G's music is popular in China, though regarding the illegal protest in hong Kong, the Chinese government has a clear position. We think that is an illegal campaign," Hua said.

"We support the government of Hong Kong to handle it in accordance with the law to maintain stability in Hong Kong. Thus we hope all foreign countries and individuals could be discreet in words and deeds and not support the illegal protest in any forms," she said.

Maybe Kenny G was the "foreign force" Chief Executive Leung was referring to a few days ago?

2 comments:

  1. Guess what, KennyG pulled the above photo, denied he ever been to Occupy Central and pissed in his pants when China found out KennyG was there...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes and now he has less fans because of it...

      Delete