Enemies of the People
Insiders at RTHK say journalists are already feeling pressure to change how they cover politics.
Last month the government formed a taskforce to review the broadcaster’s management and editorial output after pro-Beijing figures accused it of being too sympathetic to pro-democracy protests.
Gladys Chiu, head of the RTHK Program Staff Union, said senior management recently issued detailed new advice on how to cover the protests, including not zooming in too closely on flags from other countries or banners promoting independence for Hong Kong.
Reporters were also advised “not to repeat the slogans chanted by protesters”, she told AFP.
In a statement, RTHK confirmed a meeting on the issue took place and said the broadcaster “should not be used as a platform to advocate Hong Kong independence”.
Expressing anti-government views has become increasingly risky in some workplaces.
Teenagers at a secondary school recently protested after their teacher was fired for letting a student play a protest song in a music exam.
And a clothing store said it was ordered by a mall operator to remove a statue of a protester.
City leader Lam has described those critical of the security law as “enemies of the people” and warned civil servants they must not speak out against it.
Ng said it was increasingly difficult to find comedy in his satire and almost welcomed losing his job.
“What has happened in Hong Kong pains me, and it pains me even more when I have to turn it into jokes,” he sighed.
“The end of the show is almost a relief for me. Because Hong Kong will only get worse.”
PICTURES BY ISAAC LAWRENCE AND ANTHONY WALLACE/afp