About 100 masked students from different secondary schools in Kwai Chung walked to school today as part of the city's ongoing anti-government protests.
Jointly organised by five local schools in the district, the "Walk with you" student protest began from Shek Yam Lei Muk Road Park at about 7.20am. The schools involved were CNEC Christian College, Tung Wah Group of Hospitals Mrs. Wu York Yu Memorial College, Shek Lei Catholic Secondary School, Ju Ching Chu Secondary School (Kwai Chung) and HKTA The Yuen Yuen Institute No. 1 Secondary School.
With some holding protest signs, the young marchers chanted various slogans, including "Five demands, not one less", "Dismiss the police force, delay no more," and "Hongkongers, revenge!"
"I am here to call for the establishment of an independent commission of inquiry into police actions," said Mok, 15, from Pope Paul VI College.
"Take the Chow Tsz-lok case as an example, I believe his life could have been saved had the police not caused an ambulance delay, and they should be held accountable for their actions " she added.
Mok was referring to the 22 year-old University of Science and Technology student who was pronounced dead at 8am last Friday morning, suspected to have fallen four meters from a car park in Tseung Kwan O last Monday morning as police fired tear gas at protesters nearby. Allegations online suggested the force had blocked the ambulance from reaching Chow, which have been denied by the force.
While many students participated in the march, not many of them planned to boycott classes today.
Photo: SCMP / Nicola Chan
The student also blamed Chief Executive Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor for her late withdrawal of the extradition bill. "If she had agreed to retract it earlier, so many violent incidents - including the suicide and suspected suicide cases - could have been prevented."
Mok also brought along her own drawing with her, which she named "Tears". The artwork featured a black-shirted female frontline protester gearing up with a helmet and a gas mask, holding a yellow umbrella.
"It symbolises both our torn-apart society and the distress of Hongkongers, as well as my hope that the frontline protesters would not be sacrificing for nothing," she said.
"I feel the urge to speak out when there have been so many social problems in Hong Kong," said another student participant surnamed Fu, 15.
The Shek Lei Catholic Secondary School student added that he's highly concerned that few suicide investigations had been conducted, despite signs suggesting the deceased individuals involved might not have committed suicide.
Fu also said despite boycotting classes with parental permission being an option at his school, he would not consider joining any in the near future.
"I have previously boycotted class a few times, but I think there was little effect," Fu said. "I'd rather join more public events that are larger in scale, like this one," he explained, adding that his school's weekly Monday class boycott consisted of mostly self-study sessions and forming human chains during recess.
Both Mok and Fu told the SCMP they would continue to participate in similar "walk-with-you" marches if they are available in the next two days. Fu also said he would be joining an upcoming anti-government rally in Kwai Tsing on Friday after school.
The student participants split at the intersection between Tai Pak Tin Street and Tai Loong Street at about 7.30am.