500,000-strong voice

500,000-strong voice

Organisers of the July 1 march are hoping that more than half a million people will take to the streets today in a peaceful protest

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The scene in Admiralty at last year's march. An even bigger crowd is expected this year.
The scene in Admiralty at last year's march. An even bigger crowd is expected this year.
Photo: Dickson Lee

Today's forecast calls for hot weather, and some very hot political topics at Hong Kong's annual July 1 march.

With almost 800,000 Hongkongers casting their vote on Hong Kong's electoral reform, controversy over Beijing's white paper on the "one country, two systems", and arguments over the development of the northeastern New Territories, there are plenty of reasons for people to make their voices heard.

The Civil Human Rights Front - the organiser of the march - expects a huge turnout today. "We expect a lot of people in the protest, and we hope there would be more than 500,000, as in 2003," Johnson Yeung Ching-yin, the CHRF's convenor, said. He was referring to the huge protest again Article 23.

Groups such as the Federation of Students said earlier that they might start the Occupy Central civil-disobedience protest right after the march.

Students will take part in support of a number of causes. Sylvia Lam, 18, Maryknoll Convent School, says: "I am concerned about social issues, especially the HKTV licence situation. I don't feel like the government is fair, nor doing justice, so I will be there to express my fury."

Others are focused on the main theme of universal suffrage. Dorothy Ng, 19, a student at University of Hong Kong, says: "We are fighting for universal suffrage, and cancellation of functional groups in Legco, since these do not fit what we call democracy."

Helen Ho, 17, also from Maryknoll Convent School, is marching because she doesn't feel the government is listening to the people. She says: "Our opinions are gradually being eliminated by Legco and the government, so I am going to the march to tell them what we are thinking, especially in terms of the development of the northeast New Territories.

The march starts at 3pm at Victoria Park in Causeway Bay and ends at Chater Road in Central.

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
500,000-strong voice

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