Over 75% of 1,000 Singaporeans polled in June support the Hong Kong protest against the extradition bill, according to a survey by independent pollsters Blackbox Research. Political analysts suggest that these results reflect the close tied between the two cities. Even so, given Singapore’s laws on public assembly, it is unlikely that Singaporeans will adopt the Hong Kong approach of taking to the streets to voice their unhappiness.
Singapore media – both mainstream and independent – have been covering the protests extensively these past couple of months with varying points of view, from support to disagreement. One article in particular published on South China morning Post by ex-editor of Strait Times Leslie Fong painted the unfolding events as a city that is “smothering itself in full global view egged on by Western media” and that “thoughtful Singaporeans were deeply saddened” by the protests.
In an opinion piece for Straits Times, Mr Fong said that Singaporeans were witnessing with “sadness and bewilderment”, as protesters storming the Hong Kong Legislative Council building on 1 July.
The Blackbox survey results directly contradicts Mr Fong’s take on Singaporean views of the events, however. According to SCMP, a quarter of the respondents said that they strongly supported the concerns of Hong Kongers over the extradition bill while a little over half said that they somewhat supported them. This was in response to a four-choice question on their views of the concerns Hong Kongers have over the bill.
A much smaller percentage (4%) indicated that they strongly opposed the protests while 20% said they were somewhat opposed.
On whether Singapore was attentive to what was happening in Hong Kong, 32% said they were paying very close attention to the story while 42% said they were paying attention but not closely.
Almost 20% of respondents said they have heard of what’s happening in Hong Kong but haven’t been following the story while 5.6% said they haven’t even heard about it.