Cantonese through News Stories: Joshua Wong Disqualified from November Elections

Joshua Wong Speech_29 OCT 2019

Introduction

District council elections are (at the time of writing) still expected to go ahead in Hong Kong this Sunday, on 24 November. Joshua Wong Chi-fung, the young politician who has played an important role in the advocacy of the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act in America has, not surprisingly, been prevented from contesting. The reason for his exclusion? Perhaps the Orwellian word 思想警察 sī1 séung2 gíng2 chaat3 is a hint to us all . . .

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

13 new words:

裁定 chòih4 dihng6  = to rule (in a legal sense); ruling
曲解 kūk1 gáai2 = to misinterpret
政治理念 jing3 jih6 léih5 nihm6 = political belief(s)
審查 sám2 chàah4 = to investigate; to examine
政治篩選 jing3 jih6 sāi1 syún2 = political screening
理據 léih5 geui3 = argument
摒棄 bing3 hei3 = to discard; to reject; to abandon
綱領 gōng1líhng5 = programme
提倡 tàih4 chēung1 = to advocate; to promote
迫不得已 bīk1 bāt1 dāk1 yíh5 = have no other choice; have no alternative
詮釋 chyùhn4 sīk1 = to elucidate
擁護 yúng2 wuh6 = to endorse; to support

效忠 haauh6 jūng1 = to devote oneself heart & soul to; to pledge oneself to

*For correct jyutping romanization, you can cut and paste any Cantonese vocabulary in this post onto the Sheik Cantonese website.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(Opening)

參選區議會南區海怡西嘅黃之鋒被選舉主任裁定提名無效,係今屆去選唯一因爲政治主張被裁定提名無效嘅參選人。
Joshua Wong, a candidate in the district council elections for South Horizons West has had his nomination ruled as invalid by the returning officer. He is the only person running in this round of elections to have had his nomination ruled as being invalid on account of [his] political position.
Note: 屆 gaai3 is a measure word used with activities that occur on a regular basis. It is reminiscent of the English word “round”. In Cantonese 今屆 gām1 gaai3 = “this round”. It is also used in the sense of “this year’s . . .”, as in 今屆嘅香港小姐 = “this year’s Miss Hong Kong” and 今屆「狀元」 = “this year’s [crop of] ‘number one scholars’”.

黃之鋒質疑係政治審查,認爲選舉主任曲解佢嘅政治理念。
Wong said he suspected it was political examination (? = witch-hunt), and was of the opinion that the returning officer had misinterpreted his political beliefs.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(Main Report)

以「民主派」身份報名參選嘅黃之鋒三度就佢嘅政治主張回復選舉主任嘅提問。
Joshua Wong, who applied to run in the election as a “democrat”, replied three times about his political position [in response to] questions from the returning officer.

Note: 以 yíh5 has the basic meaning of “to use”, but is often employed for more abstract meanings. Here, it teams up with 身份 sān1 fán6*2= “status, identity” to give “as [literally: “using the identity/capacity of”] a democrat”. Another interesting grammatical point concerns 就 jauh6. In this situation it means “with regard to” or “on the subject of”: thus, (Wong) responded to questions from the returning officer with regard to/concerning his political beliefs”. It is vital to bear in mind that the 就-phrase appears before the main verb.

佢朝早獲書面通知被裁定提名無效。
(This) morning he received written notification that his nomination has been ruled invalid.

  • Joshua Wong speaks:

根本就係一個嘅政治審查,政治篩選。
This is basically a political examination, [a kind of] political screening.

為嘅只不過係要擔任一個思想警察嘅角色。
The purpose of which is nothing more than to have to assume the role of thought police.
Note: I haven’t come across 為嘅 waih6 ge3 very often, but it is a kind of indefinite noun roughly meaning “that for which something is for” or “the purpose of which”.

選舉主任嘅理據包括黃之鋒喺2016年撰寫嘅文章顯示香港眾志嘅立場,一直都認爲香港獨立係香港人自決前途嘅選項。
The returning officer’s arguments included [the fact that] an article written by Joshua Wong in 2016 displayed Demosistō’s stand, [a stand which] has all along considered Hong Kong independence to be an option in the prospects for the self-determination of the people of Hong Kong.

Note: On several occasions, this report uses the phrase 自決前途 jih6 kyut3 chìhn4 tòuh4, the literal meaning of which is “self-determination prospects”. At one point, Wong also reverses the order of the components and uses 前途自決.

黃之鋒既然擔任香港衆志要職,佢嘅立場亦都係咁。
Since Wong held an important position in Demosistō, his stand was that [of Demosistō’s].

黃之鋒第一次回覆裏邊未有摒棄眾志既綱領,反而進一步詳述佢嘅理解。
In his first response, Wong did not abandon Demosistō’s programme; on the contrary, he further elaborated [詳述 chèuhng4 seuht6] on his understanding [of that programme].

第二次回覆嘅時候,更清楚顯示支持同認同衆志嘅綱領。
When he answered the second time, he displayed his support for, and approval of, Demosistō’s programme even more clearly.

第三次回覆引用國家主席習近平十月十三號嘅講話,聲稱呢一番話係嚴詞威脅。
In his third response he quoted [from] a speech given by Xi Jinping on 13 October, claiming that this remark [呢一番] was a threat in no uncertain terms.

Note: 嚴詞 yìhm4 chìh4 = “strong words” is a very formal intensifier used in a number of situations such as 嚴詞拒絕 yìhm4 chìh4 kéuih5 jyuht6 = “give a stern rebuff” and 嚴詞譴責 yìhm4 chìh4 hín2 jaak3 = “denounce in strong terms”. From this it would seem that it is used with verbs with highly negative connotations.

衆志同佢本人都唔提倡同支持香港獨立係為自決前途嘅選項。
Demosistō neither advocated nor supported Hong Kong independence as an option for prospects of self-determination [自決前途].

選舉主任就認爲黃之鋒借此表示,係喺迫不得己先至聲稱佢哋作出妥協而唔係真心。
The returning officer was of the opinion that Joshua Wong’s use of this to air [his ideas] [借此表示] was a compromise made when there was no another choice, and that it was not sincere.

Note: The word 借此 je3 chi2 is a useful written element which means “① take the occasion to; avail oneself of the opportunity to ② so as to; for the purpose of; thereby”.

最後認爲黃之鋒對香港獨立同自決前途嘅主張一直抱持相同嘅立場。
Finally, [the returning officer] believed that Wong had maintained an identical position on Hong Kong independence and the prospect of self-determination all along.

經諮詢法律意見後,決定佢不獲有效提名。
After consulting legal opinion, [the officer] decided that Wong’s nomination was not valid.

Note: Actually, more literally 佢不獲有效提名 = he did not obtain a valid nomination.

  • Joshua Wong speaks:

我不曾主動提倡或爭取「港獨」作爲前途自決嘅選項。
I have never on my own initiative advocated or striven to achieve “Hong Kong independence” as an option for any future self-determination [前途自決].

但選舉主任係[去]多番曲解以及係去錯誤詮釋我嘅政治理念。
However, the returning officer has repeatedly misinterpreted and erroneously elucidated my political beliefs.

Note: Although 去 heui3 literally means “to go”, it seems to be added here to strengthen the idea of “deliberate intention”.

唯一就係説明根本上取消我嘅參選資格係一個北京嘅硬命令。
The only thing this explains is that cancelling my eligibility to take part in the election is a “hard order” from Beijing [一個北京嘅硬命令].

Note: I am not familiar with the idea of a 硬命令 or “hard order”. The translation here is a literal rendering.

DQ我嘅原因就係因爲我叫黃之鋒。
The reason why I was disqualified is because my name is Joshua Wong.

政府話,選舉主任係按法例作決定。
The government said that the returning officer had made the decision according to the regulations [法例].

Note: As far as I can tell, 法例 faat3 laih6 refers to “a (legal) regulation”. In what follows, 條例tìuh4 laih6 = “regulation” (perhaps not necessarily legal)” and 規定 kwāi1 dihng6 = “specification are also used”.

  • Patrick Nip Tak-kuen speaks:

Note: 聶德權 Nihp6 Dāk1-kyùhn4, Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs

噉因爲喺我哋嘅區議會條例裏邊呀,亦都好清楚。
It is also made very clear in our district council regulations [條例].

參選人需要擁護《基本法》同埋效忠香港特別行政區。
People running for election must uphold Basic Law and be loyal to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

噉所以喺我哋係推行選舉嘅時候呢,我哋係能夠去按《基本法》同埋相關嘅選舉嘅法例規定去進行。
For this reason, in the process of holding elections, we can do this in accordance with Basic Law as well as regulation and specifications [規定] concerning elections.

政府認同同支持選舉主任嘅決定。
The government approves of and supports the decision of the returning officer.

無綫電視記者郭詠欣報道
Report by TVB News reporter Gwok3 Wihng6 Yān1
2019年10月29日

Related reports and responses:

+ Suzanne Piper: “CANDIDATE CERTIFICATION: Incremental Victories … But At What Cost?

2 thoughts on “Cantonese through News Stories: Joshua Wong Disqualified from November Elections

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s