We are deeply shocked and disturbed by the sudden dismissal of Ming Pao’s Executive Chief Editor Keung Kwok-yuen.
In the name of “cost cutting”, the Chinese daily dismissed Mr Keung at midnight Wednesday with immediate effect. No reshuffle has been announced to fill his work.
The handling of Mr Keung’s dismissal is full of anomalies making it difficult for anyone to accept it as a pure cost-cutting move. The management owes its readers and the public an explanation.
Mr Keung is a veteran journalist who has spearheaded the coverage of major controversies in Hong Kong in past decades. Among them were the 2003 rally against the national security law; the 2012 campaign against national education as well as the death of mainland political dissident Li Wang-yang. He was praised as the soul of the team by many staff members.
If a journalist as moderate and professional as Mr Keung cannot be tolerated, what does it say about the press freedom of Hong Kong? We are deeply disturbed and worried.
The Hong Kong Journalist Association
The Independent Commentators Association,
The Hong Kong Press Photographer Association,
Journalism Educators for Press Freedom
The RTHK Programme Staff Union
The Next Media Trade Union
The International Federation of Journalists.
The Foreign Correspondents’ Club, Hong Kong
April 21, 2016