More frantic and clunkily obvious reminders from the Hong Kong government that they are freaked out at the prospect of an embarrassingly low turnout at Sunday’s Legislative Council ‘election’. Security Secretary PK Tang suggests that ‘coercing people into not voting’ might be against the NatSec Law. He then piles on more reasons to stay clear of polling stations by adding…
“We’ll also target lone-wolf style attacks in strategic locations. Such attacks are hard to detect from intelligence monitoring. We’ll conduct searches of suspicious people.”
(Is it against the NatSec Law to repost anything about Joey Siu’s ReleaseMyCandidate campaign?)
There are more arrests of people ‘inciting’ others not to vote. And Beijing’s local officials are blaming hostile foreign forces for undermining the poll.
The private sector is joining in. Bus companies and the MTR are waiving all fares on election day. Some media and other groups are sponsoring ads encouraging the public to vote. And KPMG are offering staff an extra day’s leave if they cast a ballot – though the leaked email suggests that a mere declaration is the best they can demand as proof.
KPMG’s last-minute pre-emptive shoe-shine was imaginative (for accountants) and likely to trigger panic in other companies now left in the position of not making a similar gesture, thus running the risk of appearing disloyal to the authorities. Is there still time for HSBC and others to hurriedly incentivize (incite?) local employees to vote?
“…suspicious people…” Uh uh, I am in trouble.
If I was a KPMG employee and I didn’t claim my day-off reward, would that mark me as subversive and anti-China, because it implies that I didn’t vote? Would that go into my personnel file?
If the bus companies and the MTR are going to waive fares, then why don’t I just skip the election altogether and use the free transport to get all my shopping for Christmas done? Seems reasonable to me.
How about one of the developers offering a free flat via lottery to a lucky voter? It seemed to increase turnout for the vaccine.
Or is that too big of a bribe?
PK Tang’s vague comments on the National Security Law, tempered as they are with “likely”, “may”, “might” and such, serve only to baldly illustrate that Hong Kong’s Security Secretary, the man in charge of implementing and enforcing the NSL has absolutely no idea what the NSL actually covers.
Couple that with a “justice” secretary who had no idea that all four of her houses had illegal structures even though she specialised in illegal structure law for years.
Cue the Benny Hill music.
Just looked it up. For my Monday morning mental exercise:
Total registered electorate 2021: 4,472,863
Voter turnout District Elections 2019: 2,943,842 (71 % or registered electorate 2019)
Pro Dem 1,674,083
Clueless 到 PK: NOBODY DOES!
Another magistrate for re-assignment or “early retirement”