The New Home Association, an agency that provides support services for newcomers to Hong Kong, is doing its bit to support the anti-Occupy Central rally that is being organized by the Alliance for Peace and Democracy.
The association is encouraging its members to participate in the August 17 march by promising the participants hugely subsidized seafood meals, Apple Daily reported over the weekend.
According to fliers distributed by the association, rally participants will get coupons that will enable them to enjoy a 10-dish seafood meal and a bus tour for just HK$20 (US$2.58) per person.
The package includes a visit to the Hong Kong Museum of History, lunch and “activity in Hong Kong Island”. Children under 14 are free to join.
An association staff member said they are able to offer the package at such low fee as the agency has received significant monetary sponsorship. Participants do not necessarily have to march all the way in the planned rally this Sunday; they just have to be at Victoria Park between 2 pm and 3 pm for the before-parade assembly.
Meanwhile, the cheap tour has invited criticism from some groups. Lee Cheuk-yan, a lawmaker from the Labor Party, said the association must explain clearly what the tour is really about, to dispel any misunderstanding among the participants. The cheap meal and tour amounts to paying people to join the anti-Occupy Central rally, he said.
Robert Chow Yung, a spokesperson for the Alliance for Peace and Democracy, was quoted as saying that he sees no problem in combining the tour with the group activity.
A spokesman for the rally organizers said on Saturday that more than 800 groups have signed up for the march. The organizers expect a turnout of more than 82,000 people for the upcoming event.
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