The 71-year-old daughter of the founder of restaurant chain Maxim’s has blasted Hong Kong’s Education Sector, for failing to instill national pride and true identities in its young folks.
Annie Wu Suk-ching, a renowned Pro-Beijing businesswoman blamed the city’s education system for its failure to encourage a proper sense of national identity in local youths.
She also slammed parents of young children who refused to instill patriotism in their offsprings and did not bring them up properly.
Wu condemned the action of the Hong Kong’s protesters explaining she has lost hope in the city’s next two generations, and that the young people have no idea of what they are doing.
The Pro-Beijing businesswoman had earlier denounced the movement of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, saying;
the views of the protesters represent that of a small group of radicals and not the views of all 7.5 million Hongkongers.
Her comments infuriated protesters, increasing the level of vandalism against Maxim’s outlets around Hong Kong.
HongKong protesters set fire to a Maxim's Caterers restaurant inside a shopping mall. They will not stop violence and vandalism after winning District Council election, they will just legalize the violence and vandalism by protesters. pic.twitter.com/TH2f93tXCq
— Liam Stone石立安 (@liamstone_19) November 26, 2019
The Maxim boss is the founder and serving member of the management committee of the Chinese Foundation Secondary School in Siu Sai Wan and a former member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Standing Committee, the country’s top political advisory body.
Wu has openly been criticizing the protesters’ siege of the airport, railway, and damage to educational facilities, stating the move’s damage to how the world views Hong Kong.
Many disapprove of the destruction on Maxim’s outlets by protesters but added that Wu has not done much for youngsters, making her ineligible to say she has given up on the present generation.
Maxim Group distanced itself from Wu’s comments
Maxim’s Group has issued a directive to staff to apologize to customers after the restaurants were targeted by anti-government protesters in Sha Tin’s New Town Plaza during a rally on Sunday.
The firm owns and operates several well-known chains, including the Hong Kong operations for Starbucks, upmarket bakery and cafe Cova, and Chinese restaurants including Jade Garden and Peking Garden.
The group issued its statement, thanking its frontline staff. And added it has issued emergency guidelines and assistance to affected employees, although it didn’t elaborate on what the guidelines included.
Education sector reaction
The Education Department has said in a reply to Wu’s comment that although it shares responsibility for fostering students’ values, but in this case, the causes of young people taking part in illegal activities were complex and involved more than the education system.
Ip Kin-yuen, education sector lawmaker said Wu misunderstood the city’s education system, arguing that many schools in the region do their best to instill patriotism in the young ones.
According to Ip, all secondary schools have Chinese history in their curriculum, while kindergarten and primary school pupils could learn about Chinese culture and history in other subjects.
Adding that it will be unfair to blame the educational sector, stating that the social movement is not driven by the education system, but the administrative problems of the government.
Wu is not involved in any managerial decision
Maxim’s Caterers Limited is a Hong Kong-based food, beverage and restaurant chain 50% owned by Dairy Farm International Holdings Limited. Founded in 1956, the company operates over 1,000 outlets in Hong Kong, China, Cambodia, and Vietnam.
This is not the first time that Wu had issued a statement against the students or their protest actions.
On September 11, Annie Wu appeared at the United Nations Human Rights Council representing the Hong Kong Federation of Women, alongside billionaire businesswoman Pansy Ho. The pair said in a statement that the “small group of radical protesters,” which used “systematic and calculated violent acts,” did not represent all Hongkongers.
The duo also defended the use of tear gas and rubber bullets by Hong Kong police, saying that the crowd control tactics were also adopted elsewhere in the world.
Students at two Hong Kong universities have held protests targeting caterer Maxim’s Group after Annie Wu – the daughter of the firm’s founder – denounced the pro-democracy movement during an appearance at the United Nations.
Maxim’s has issued a statement saying that Wu “does not hold any position at the company” and is not involved in managerial decisions.