Pro-Beijing lawmaker Junius Ho has clarified his solicitor qualifications in his company biography, following questions over his practising status abroad.
Though it was confirmed that he had been admitted as a solicitor in Singapore, England and Wales, it emerged that Ho did not hold practising certificates for the jurisdictions in question.
However, his Chinese biography on the K. C. Ho & Fong website stated that he was a “practising member” in each of the regions. The page was updated on Saturday to add the word “qualification,” to suggest that he could potentially become a practising member, but that he was not necessarily practising.
Ho told Sing Tao Daily that there was a “typographical error” – a common term in Chinese for writing errors – in the original Chinese page, which omitted the term “qualification”. It was thus fixed.
His company biography and the Legislative Council biography in English said he was “admitted as a Solicitor in Singapore in 1995” and “admitted as a Solicitor in England and Wales in 1997.”
But his election pamphlet for the Legislative Council election in 2016 stated that he was a “solicitor in Singapore, England and Wales.” Both the election pamphlet and his Legislative Council member biography in Chinese stated that he was a “practising member” in Singapore, England and Wales.
The Legislative Council biography in Chinese has yet to be updated.
Section 26 of the Elections (Corrupt and Illegal Conduct) Ordinance of Hong Kong stipulates that any candidate or person who publishes a materially false or misleading statement of fact about particular candidate(s) for the purpose of promoting or prejudicing the election of the candidate or candidates shall be guilty of an offence.
The incident began when the the Solicitors Regulation Authority replied to a complaint over Ho’s recent speeches calling for the killing of Hong Kong independence advocates. The reply said “Junius Kwan-Yiu Ho” was not a solicitor, and is not admitted in England and Wales, thus it could not proceed with the complaint.
But it emerged that “Kwan Yiu Ho,” a variation of his name, was indeed admitted in September 1997. Ho had said he did not practise in England and Wales.
Ho also posted a document on social media which showed he was admitted as a solicitor in Singapore in February 1995 with the name “Ho Kwan Yiu.” Ho told Ming Pao that he did not practise in the country.