Alvin Lum

Alvin Lum

Political journalist covering in Hong Kong politics, justice system and policy analysis.

Alvin is a contributor to Inkstone. He reports on politics and the law for the South China Morning Post.

Location
Hong Kong
Language spoken
English, Mandarin, Cantonese
Areas of Expertise
Hong Kong politics, Hong Kong justice system, policy analysis
Coronavirus travel ordeal: quarantine, detention, more quarantine
What started as a potentially lucrative business trip for one Hongkonger and a dream honeymoon for another ended in a Russian detention nightmare for both after they were accused of breaking the country’s quarantine laws. In an ordeal lasting three weeks, a businessman trying to buy surgical masks and bring them back to Hong Kong, who gives his name as Sky, describes being held in a dirty, crowded cell in Moscow before his deportation to mainland China. He was briefly detained in the mainland before he returned to Hong Kong, where he had to undergo a compulsory quarantine. A similar trauma befell another Hong Kong resident – a newlywed who is also now back in the city after visiting Russia
First human-to-dog coronavirus transmission reported in Hong Kong
A pet dog in Hong Kong may have caught the coronavirus from its infected owner. A Pomeranian belonging to a Covid-19 patient in the city has contracted the virus, the city’s health authorities confirmed on Wednesday. (What is Covid-19? Where did the coronavirus come from? Here’s what we’ve learned so far about the coronavirus.) The dog has repeatedly tested positive for having a low level of the virus since Friday last week. The infection is likely to be the first case of human-to-animal transmission of the disease, experts said, but animal lovers need not worry about their pets or their own health. “These test results suggest that the dog has a low level of infection, which was also found i
Hong Kong media mogul arrested over anti-government protest
The Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai was arrested on Friday in what a pro-democracy lawmaker has called “political persecution.” Lai, a publishing tycoon known for his anti-Beijing activism, was arrested for his role during the anti-government protests that swept Hong Kong last year. The police have also accused him of intimidating a reporter for a competing newspaper in 2017. A police source said the 71-year-old was held as part of an operation targeting those involved in a march on August 31 last year amid unrest sparked by a now-withdrawn plan that would have allowed the transfer of criminal suspects from Hong Kong to mainland China. Protesters against the bill feared that it would erode
Top students debate Hong Kong. Then they want nothing to do with it
Would China grant Hong Kong universal suffrage? This is a question that some participants in the world’s largest university debating tournament do not want to be associated with. At the World Universities Debating Championships (WUDC), a motion on Hong Kong democracy has caused a stir. Mainland Chinese spectators were said to have walked out, while the winning team asked for their names to be removed from the record.  Four teams, from Oxford University, Yale University, the University of Belgrade in Serbia and Macquarie University in Australia, were competing in the final round of WUDC 2020 held in Thailand on January 3.  But after the motion “This House, as China, would grant universal suff
Foreign experts quit watchdog group investigating Hong Kong police
Foreign experts advising Hong Kong’s police watchdog have abruptly announced they will “stand aside” from an ongoing review of officers’ actions during the anti-government protests. Last month, the five-member panel of overseas experts convened by the Independent Police Complaints Council (IPCC) said the watchdog should be given more powers to conduct its own investigation over officers’ conduct during the protests. But council chairman Anthony Neoh, who had enlisted the members, all international experts with years of experience in policing and crowd behavior, rejected their proposal. In an interview with a mainland Chinese media organization, Neoh criticized them for a lack of understandin
Bracing for clashes: Hong Kong protesters turn college campus into fortress
Visitors and staff trying to enter a university in Hong Kong that was the site of a fiery battle between protesters and police this week have encountered a makeshift checkpoint. Protesters wearing black who guard the booth – made of bamboo sticks, umbrellas and a door from a trashed car – have roughly searched through any visitor belongings and questioned the purpose of their visit to the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) in Sha Tin. A plank at the checkpoint has the words “CU arrival” scrawled on it. The protesters claimed their intention was to prevent plain-clothes police officers from getting onto the campus, but it has resulted in many people, especially university staff, feeling d
‘Hongkongers, revenge’: Student’s death prompts outpouring of grief and anger
Thousands of people across Hong Kong took to the streets, shopping malls and campuses on Friday to mourn a student who died from a fall during a clash between the police and protesters. Mourners joined impromptu rallies in the hours following the death of Chow Tsz-lok, a college student who fell from a parking lot on Monday while riot police dispersed crowds with tear gas nearby.  Hundreds of office workers marched in the Central business district, many wearing masks in defiance of a government ban on face covering and vowing to seek justice. “Blood for blood,” some marchers shouted. “Hongkongers, revenge.” The development could escalate tension in a city that has been rocked since June by
Hong Kong democracy activist Joshua Wong barred from election
Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong has been banned from running in local elections next month, a move that could further fuel public anger at the city’s limited democracy underpinning months of social unrest. Wong was the only candidate disqualified from the polls, to be held on November 24, on the basis of his political stance. “The ban is clearly politically driven,” Wong said. “My disqualification will only trigger more people to take to the streets and vote in the coming elections.” Wong is a co-founder of the party Demosisto, whose founding mission is to strive for Hong Kong’s “self-determination.” The former British colony returned to Chinese rule in 1997 under the promise o
Lawyer at French bank quits after supporting Hong Kong protests
A lawyer at French bank BNP Paribas in Hong Kong has quit after expressing support for anti-government protests in the city and mocking pro-Chinese supporters on his personal Facebook account. The Facebook post by Jason Ng, who served as legal head of BNP’s debt capital markets, had triggered calls on Chinese social media for a boycott of the bank The resignation of Ng, confirmed by a source with knowledge of the matter, followed an earlier apology from the French bank, saying the remarks “did not reflect the view of BNP Paribas.” Ng declined to comment on his former employer and said it was a private matter. It’s unclear whether he volunteered to quit or was fired. BNP Paribas also decline
Hong Kong spent $1 million on PR blitz. It’s not very effective
The Hong Kong government has spent nearly $1 million on a global advertising campaign to convince the world that all is well in the city, despite the continuing anti-government demonstrations. The city’s authorities told the South China Morning Post that it has spent HK$7.4 million ($943,000) to place ads in newspapers in countries including the US, South Korea and Germany.  But industry experts said the official campaign paled in comparison to the public relations drive by the protesters in terms of both spending and success.  “The campaigns of the activists go beyond paid advertisements, as they earned publicity in media as well on reports of their tactics and creativity,” said Andy Ho On