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Hong Kong Today
Hong Kong Today
RTHK's morning news programme. Weekdays 6:30 - 8:00
Samantha Butler and Janice Wong


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Selected audio segments:
First suspected local Covid case in two months  Listenfacebook
There are reports that Hong Kong could have its first local coronavirus case in 57 days, involving a resident in Sham Shui Po. It comes as the government banned people returning to the city from Macau under its quarantine-free Return2HK scheme, after a family there tested positive. Aaron Tam reports:
Doubts raised over school vaccine requirements  Listenfacebook
The chairman of the Hong Kong Direct Subsidy Scheme Schools Council, Dion Chen, says he believes most local schools cannot resume full-day in-person classes when the new academic year starts next month, because there is not enough time for them to meet the requirement of having 70 percent of students and staff inoculated. He also told Timmy Sung that schools should explain the situation to parents and let them decide whether to allow their children to get the jabs:
Govt urged to help boost maid vaccination rate  Listenfacebook
The government has announced it will relax travel restrictions to allow fully-vaccinated foreign domestic helpers to return to Hong Kong, or come here to commence work. Labour secretary Law Chi-kwong had said officials were working on a plan to verify the vaccination records of those who received jabs in their home countries. Eni Lestari from the International Migrants Alliance welcomed the easing of restrictions, but said the government should do more to encourage helpers to get vaccinated:
Expert says Macau cases show fragility of travel bubbles  Listenfacebook
Epidemiologist Benjamin Cowling has expressed concern over reports of Macau residents testing positive for Covid-19 after returning from the mainland, saying it shows the “fragility” of travel bubbles. The University of Hong Kong Professor said while Hong Kong hoped to establish quarantine-free travel across the border, it could easily fall apart if an outbreak appeared on either side. He also commented on new rules that simplified the risk assessment of countries for inbound travelers, allowing some stranded residents to return, as long as they're fully-vaccinated. The changes also allow in domestic helpers and business people who've been unable to enter because of flight bans. He told Samantha Butler it was the right approach because fully-vaccinated people posed a lower risk to the community:
Doctors group asks for vaccine exemptions  Listenfacebook
The president of the Public Doctors' Association, Tony Ling, says health authorities didn't consult them about a new requirement for medical workers to get vaccinated or pay for regular Covid-19 tests out of their own pocket. He says he'll ask the Hospital Authority whether there can be exemptions. Timmy Sung reports:
Wuhan to test entire city for Covid  Listenfacebook
Authorities in Wuhan say they will test the city's entire population for Covid-19 after finding the first local infections in more than a year. The central Chinese city is where the coronavirus first emerged at the end of 2019. Priscilla Ng reports:
Pro-Beijing figures wave off election breach concerns  Listenfacebook
Pro-establishment figures have dismissed suggestions that their election rallies could be in breach of the law. That's after a former pro-democracy lawmaker and a singer were charged by the anti-graft agency, the ICAC, over a campaign event three years ago. Wong Yin-ting reports:
Hong Kong media outlet relocates to Singapore  Listenfacebook
Initium Media, a Hong Kong-based digital media outlet, says it's moving its headquarters to Singapore. In a letter to its readers, Initium's executive editor, Susie Wu, said the road to freedom had become more difficult over the past six years since its launch, with the world becoming more divided, and Hong Kong's ranking in press freedom plummeting. Journalism professor Grace Leung from the Chinese University says she believes Initium no longer finds Hong Kong a safe place for reporting. She spoke to Jimmy Choi:
Pro-democracy artist flees to Taiwan  Listenfacebook
One of Hong Kong's best-known artists, Kacey Wong, says he's left Hong Kong for Taiwan. He told local media he wanted to go to a place where he would enjoy "100 percent freedom". Damon Pang reports:
Veteran journalist flees ‘white terror’  Listenfacebook
Veteran journalist and former RTHK presenter Steve Vines also says he's fled the SAR for Britain, to escape what he calls the “white terror sweeping through Hong Kong”. Vicky Wong reports:
Balloon controversy continues  Listenfacebook
Pro-democracy activists Lee Cheuk-yan and Tsang Kin-shing have appeared in court over the releasing of a balloon during a New Year's Day protest. Tsang received a fine after pleading guilty, while Lee is to be put on trial. Jimmy Choi reports:
Anti-smoking group calls for total e-cig ban  Listenfacebook
The Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health (COSH) has released a new survey which suggests alternative smoking products may be more harmful than traditional cigarettes. A survey by the group and the University of Hong Kong found that 39 percent of secondary school students who used heated tobacco products had respiratory symptoms consistent with chronic bronchitis - significantly higher than 30 percent of respondents who smoked traditional cigarettes. The council says this is further proof that alternative smoking products should be completely banned in Hong Kong. The group wants the legislature to change the law before the current term ends in October. COSH’s chairman Henry Tong told Janice Wong about the mounting evidence against alternative smoking products: