Instead, huge crowds surged onto the streets at the weekend and into Monday, blocking major roads. The students and public were angry about police tactics and dozens of arrests made outside Hong Kong government headquarters, where students broke through the police cordon to occupy the area late on Friday night.
“The Occupy movement has become fully fledged with tens of hundreds of citizens taking to the streets fighting for genuine universal suffrage and supporting the students,” the group said in a statement on Monday.
Co-founder of Occupy Central, Benny Tai, a law professor, conceded the students had taken the lead. “It's important for us to join with the students, and we will stay until the last minute with the movement.”
Occupy Central had been expected to start their sit-in on 1 October – a public holiday commemorating the anniversary of the Communist takeover in China.
Lai also gave the Democratic Party HK$10 million in two payments - HK$5 million in October 2013 and HK$5 million in June 2014.
The Civic Party also got an additional of HK$6 million during the period.
Alliance for True Democracy convener Joseph Cheng Yue-shek and Occupy Central organizer Reverend Chu Yiu-ming received HK$300,000 in June 2013 and HK$400,000 in April 2013 and April 2014, respectively.
Former chief secretary Anson Chan Fang On-sang got HK$3.5 million - more than twice the HK$1.3 million she received from Lai between 2007 and 2009.
Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun received HK$6 million and Democratic Party founder Martin Lee Chu-ming got HK$300,000.
League of Social Democrats lawmaker "Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung received HK$1 million.
Former Civic Party lawmaker Tanya Chan Suk-chong and five incumbent pan-democratic lawmakers - Democratic Party's James To Kun-sun, Labour Party's Lee Cheuk-yan, Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit and the party's lawmaker Claudia Mo Man- ching and Leung - received donations between April 2012 and April 2014.