Sunday was open day at Government House but not everybody was welcome.
Protesters holding yellow umbrellas and wearing shirts emblazoned with democracy slogans were thrown out of the premises, Metro Daily Hong Kong reported Monday.
Visitors friendly to its occupant — Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying — who wore their pro-government credentials on their front and back were left unimpeded.
More than 15,000 people flocked to the former British colonial mansion to admire the blooming azaleas and tour the grounds in this highly anticipated tradition begun in 1968.
Attendance topped last year’s record by 1,000, the report said
Lui Yuk-lin, a pro-democracy supporter, said she was stopped by policemen at the entrance after she shouted “I want genuine universal suffrage”.
Police said she was trying to bring in protest materials and was removed from the premises by female officers.
People Power executive committee member Tam Tak-chi was also thrown out after he tried to enter the venue with a Lunar New Year couplet with the words “I want genuine universal suffrage”.
Erica Yuen, leader of People Power, was asked to leave after 30 minutes because she was attracting too much media attention, the report said.
She accused the police of being unreasonable.
Also escorted out was Ray Wong, a spokesman for Hong Kong Indigenous, a group formed during last year’s democracy protests.
“They asked me to leave simply because of the shirt I was wearing. The government is obviously targeting people who have a different view,” he said.
Leung and his wife came out to meet the visitors, spending 10 minutes to talk, shake hands and take photos with them.
He did not answer questions from the media.
Leung later condemned the protesters for disturbing others who were merely enjoying the flowers.
He accused the protesters of political motives, saying they were only after media coverage.
In all, 21 people were led away by the police, including two middle-aged visitors for police obstruction.
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