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旅發局職員公開信


 

我們是香港旅遊發展局的一班員工,作為政府資助機構一員,職能是在世界各地宣傳和推廣香港為旅遊勝地。近期,本港不同專業團體、政府部門及公營機構員工,均先後就《逃犯條例》修訂引起的連串爭議發聲,我們亦希望表達我們的聲音。

過去兩個月,我們見到我們熱愛的香港變得不一樣──數以百萬計市民接連走上街頭,表達反對《逃犯條例》修訂,甚至有市民以死相諫,但依然得不到政府的正面回應,反以「暫緩」、「壽終正寢」等語言偽術,企圖蒙混過關。更甚的是,政府縱容警方濫用暴力,以催淚彈、布袋彈、橡膠子彈及海綿彈等對付示威者,甚至是記者、議員,令整個香港徹底撕裂。

最令我們痛心的是7月21日當晚,我們看到白衣暴徒衝入西鐵車廂,無差別攻擊市民,而警方卻遲遲未有到場,附近警署反而落閘,999又未能打通,種種跡象,無法不令人質疑,這是警黑勾結的大龍鳳。警方事後竟然還要砌辭狡辯,指因為大部分警力調配至上環,以致需要花39分鐘時間才能調動足夠警力到場。而特首林鄭月娥更將中聯辦及上環的示威活動,與元朗恐襲混為一談,言談間認為國徽較市民人身安全更重要,實在令我們非常憤怒。

我們一直向外宣傳,香港是世界其中一個最安全的地方,然而過去這段時間,守護香港安全的,反而是一眾香港市民,我們不時看到警方以清場為名,闖入商場、車站,最終釀成流血衝突。但同一時間,香港人在過去的兩個月,一次又一次向全世界展示最美的風景──遊行人潮如紅海般分開,讓出通道予救傷車及巴士、每次大型遊行後幾乎不留痕跡、示威者會主動保護不相識的外國記者、各區自發出現為大家打氣的連儂牆……向全世界展現香港人優秀的一面。

誠然,示威遊行活動的確會為本地旅遊業帶來影響,但歸根究底,造成此問題的不是示威者,而是特區政府,而自詡「香港母親」的特首林鄭月娥更加責無旁貸。故此,我們促請政府從速正面回應廣大香港市民的五大訴求,特別是必須成立獨立委員會徹查警察濫權,及警黑勾結的指控。

宣傳推廣香港,是我們現在職責,但守護香港,是身為香港人的義務。我們願與每一位愛香港的人同行,大家加油,萬事小心!

以下為來稿者提供約80名旅發局職員的證件照片:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are a group of staff members of the Hong Kong Tourism Board. As employees of a government-subvented organisation tasked with promoting Hong Kong to visitors worldwide, we would like to join other public bodies, civil servants and professional organisations in expressing our indignation over the incidents in the past weeks that were triggered by the proposed extradition bill.

In the recent two months, the city we once proudly called home and a world-class travel destination has undergone drastic changes. Over a million Hong Kong residents have taken to the street to voice their opposition against the proposed extradition bill. Gripped by a sense of helplessness and despair about the bill and the degradation of Hong Kong’s political landscape, some even took their own lives. Despite all these, the government regrettably refused to respond directly to the demands of the people - whom it is supposed to serve - to withdraw the bill, but rather employed double-talk in an attempt to fool the public. And to further split society asunder, the government gave the police tacit approval to use unnecessary violence, from tear gas to beanbag rounds, react rounds and rubber bullets, on the protestors, most of whom were unarmed and adhering to the etiquette of peaceful demonstration, and even on journalists and legislators.

What saddened and outraged us the most, however, was seeing thugs dressed in white beating people indiscriminately in Yuen Long MTR station in the evening of July 21. Not only did the police arrive at the scene unreasonably late, but they even closed the doors of the police stations when people tried to get help, while the emergency hotline 999 could not be got through. It is difficult to make sense of such police behaviour, which all seem to suggest collusion with the attackers. The police’s explanation that the 39 minutes in delay for the police to arrive at the crime scene was a result of the deployment of the majority of the police force - which comprises about 30,000 members of staff - to Sheung Wan sounded like nothing but an excuse.

At the media stand-up the day following the attack, Chief Executive Carrie Lam clearly attached greater importance to the protest in Sheung Wan which was political in nature than the violence that took place in Yuen Long which caused bodily harm to innocent people, and to a large extend, equivocate the natures between the two. In fact, she even agreed at one point that the national emblem was more valuable than the lives of the assault victims. Such disregard for human rights and ethical principles is hair-raising.

The HKTB was always promoting Hong Kong as a safe city to visitors. Yet, during the past weeks, not only did the assault in Yuen Long destroyed this longstanding reputation of Hong Kong, but we also saw the police forcefully disperse the protestors inside a shopping mall, which aggravated the tension and led to standoffs and casualties. On the contrary, we have seen the people of Hong Kong safeguarding the city and epitomising the bright side of humanity during this period of social turmoil - protesters parting ways to let an ambulance pass, collecting and recycling wastes, and protecting foreign journalists and strangers. The Lennon Walls that sprang up across the city also demonstrated the solidarity and determination of the people of Hong Kong to fight for the freedom they rightly deserve.

The protests no doubt have an impact on the tourism industry, it is however not the protestors but the government that is to blame. Carrie Lam, the self-professed “mother” of Hong Kong people, can no longer shed her responsibilities in causing a divided Hong Kong. We hereby solemnly urge the government to respond to the five demands of the people and set up a Commission of Inquiry to seriously look into allegations of the police’s abuse of power and collusion with members of the triads, and give society a truthful explanation.

While it is our job to promote Hong Kong, it is our duty as Hongkongers to protect our city. We stand by all those who love Hong Kong and who are protecting our city. Please stay safe in this historic battle for freedom and justice.


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