Citizens must make their views known over irresponsible filibuster tactic

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 23 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 23 May, 2012, 12:00am


Peter Lok's letter ('Some voters love bad behaviour', May 14) explained why the legislative filibuster could work in Hong Kong. But an overdose of this tactic has backfired.

Some people argue that a filibuster is an act to uphold justice, fairness and democracy. What is the logic behind the resignation of incumbent legislators who are fed up with the existing government and try to get re-elected to the same legislature? What justice is there for the electors and the administration to go through the by-election process? While the incumbents could gain political mileage, is it fair to the taxpayers who foot the bill of the by-elections and the civil servants who shoulder the work? Democracy definitely does not mean freedom to cause obstruction and chaos

The harm done by the despicable filibuster is too great to be ignored. Holding up Legco procedures not only cripples our economic and social policies, resulting in billions of dollars lost, but will also put the functions of the incoming government in jeopardy.

The unruly behaviour of some lawmakers also sets a bad example for young people who will ignore order and discipline whenever they choose to do so. Further, it has polarised political parties and groups inside and outside Legco. The filibuster is a shame for Hong Kong people, especially those who threw their support behind the move.

This is a war of justice in which all civic-minded citizens should join.

The mass media should report on public opinion that generally describes the filibuster as a farce. Businesses and industries that are directly involved in Hong Kong's economic prosperity should act out their dissent. Academics, who are the beacons of social justice, should preach. The kaifongs, non-governmental organisations and religious groups should join forces to take filibuster organisers to task for what they did. Some of these groups did protest and this made an impact.

Unfortunately, irrational politicians still did not take the hint. They caused further trouble over the necessary use of special power by the Legco president to end the filibuster on May 17.

In view of more radical actions envisaged, the community must come up with innovative and effective measures that will convince misguided voters who hold the trump card for legislators seeking the people's mandate for their inappropriate actions. Let us work together to bring a U-turn of Hong Kong's pending dive into the river of no return.

Patsy Leung, Mid-Levels