Date
18 November 2017
King Zhi band had to face the music after speaking about freedom and democracy while on stage in Guangzhou last Sunday. Photo: Weibo.com
King Zhi band had to face the music after speaking about freedom and democracy while on stage in Guangzhou last Sunday. Photo: Weibo.com

HK band warned over Occupy reference at Guangzhou concert

A Hong Kong music band that was performing in Guangzhou is said to have been warned by the concert organizers not to make controversial remarks on the pro-democracy protests that have rocked the special administrative region.

According to an Apple Daily report, a member of the King Zhi band spoke about the Occupy protests in Hong Kong while on stage in Guangzhou last Sunday. 

“Hong Kong police dragged one of our citizens to a dark corner and beat him up. Will that be acceptable to you if such a thing happens here,” the band member is reported to have asked the crowd, referring to the Ken Tsang incident last Wednesday.

“We have been fighting for freedom and democracy in… Hong Kong. We hope the [fight] will start from Hong Kong and expand to all over China.”

The remarks prompted warnings from some fans as well as the concert staff.

“These topics are taboo, you could get arrested,” a person said, according to a YouTube video clip.

King Zhi said the Guangzhou police were filming them as they were on stage. “We are so lucky to arrive home safely,” they said in a message posted on Facebook.

“We did not realize that these common comments… could get us into trouble in the mainland,” they said, adding that Hong Kong citizens should cherish their freedom of speech.

State news agency Xinhua, meanwhile, has published a commentary criticizing Hong Kong artists such as To Man-chak, Wong Chau-Sang and Ho Wan-See for their support for the Occupy Central movement.

The artists are siding with anti-China groups even as they reap fortunes from the mainland, the article suggested. Ignoring the Basic Law and “One Country and Two Systems” and challenging the authority of the central government will do no good, it said.

The strongly-worded article urged the artists to learn from martial arts movie star Jackie Chan on how conduct oneself.

Nearly 100,000 mainland netizens have voted to boycott the artists whose patriotism towards the motherland is in doubt, it pointed out

“Democracy and freedom in any country is… based on law, instead of doing what one wishes without restraint,” the article said.

– Contact us at [email protected]

JZ/MY/RC

Freelance journalist

EJI Weekly Newsletter

Please click here to unsubscribe