A group of people who gathered outside the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai on Sunday to root for Carrie Lam, who later won the chief executive election, received payment for joining the rally, i-Cable News reports.
The news network showed a WhatsApp image circulating online regarding the payment arrangements for people who would attend the gathering.
An i-Cable News reporter went undercover and met up with a man who called himself “Billy” after contacting him via WhatsApp on the eve of election day to discuss how to be a part of the pro-Lam rallyists.
Following the man’s instructions, the reporter arrived at the venue and shouted slogans in support of Lam.
The reporter said participants received blue or black hats for easier identification by the organizers. After the demonstration, they were paid HK$600 and a free meal.
While joining the rally, the reporter said many of the participants, numbering a few hundreds, didn’t seem to care about the election and were apparently only after the money.
The demonstration is said to have been organized by a local pro-Beijing group called Voice of Justice.
Chan Hok-gon, founder of the group, denied having paid the people who joined the demonstration and dared reporters to show evidence to back up their allegations.
Asked about the demonstrators, Lam said she has no knowledge of those groups supporting her candidacy and she was not involved in their organization.
She said she does not believe in gaining support by means of “shouting loud and mobilizing followers”, thestandnews.com reported.
Hong Kong is a rational and evidence-based society, Lam added.
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