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Tensions expected to continue between government and pan-democrats: academic  Listenfacebook
Political analyst Chung Kim-wah says tensions are expected to continue in the coming months between the government and the pan-democratic camp. Chung, who is an assistant professor at the Department of Applied Social Sciences at the Polytechnic University, says the disqualification of four more pro-democracy lawmakers over the way they took their oaths of office is just going to make matters worse. He was responding to comments by Basic Law Committee member Albert Chen who said the government should "be lenient" towards the four by using its discretion so that they won't need to return the Legco salaries paid to them since October, nor pay the legal costs for the judicial review that led to their disqualification. Chung speaks to Annemarie Evans.
Reinstate collective bargaining legislation: veteran unionist  Listenfacebook
The Confederation of Trade Unions has called on the government to reinstate the collective bargaining legislation so that low-income workers could earn a decent living. Its general secretary, former lawmaker Lee Cheuk-yan, says the lives of grassroots workers haven't improved 20 years after the handover, despite accumulated GDP per capita growth of 68 percent during that period. The CTU says the average salary of middle- and low-income workers rose 7.8 percent over the years - after discounting inflation. Citing government data, it says on average, these employees earned HK$15,000 a month in 2016, compared with HK$10,000 in 1996. Lee says the minimum wage introduced in 2011 mostly helped only security guards and cleaners - but few others. He spoke to Priscilla Ng.
WhatsApp disrupted in China  Listenfacebook
Mainland users of the instant messaging app, WhatsApp, have not been able to send and receive videos and pictures. Text messages are not affected. Human rights lawyer Hu Jia says he noticed the problem on Monday night, linking it to a further crackdown on speech freedom by mainland authorities. He says the mainland human rights circle has been using the app to share information in recent years, given that it's more secure than WeChat which is censored by the authorities. The latest restriction comes a day after images of cartoon character Winnie the Pooh were blocked on mainland social media - because bloggers have been comparing the plump bear to President Xi Jinping. China analyst Mark O'Neill told Annemarie Evans that all this is happening because of a major communist party event in autumn.