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  • Nov 1, 2014
  • Updated: 3:22pm
NewsHong Kong
POLITICAL REFORM

Opponents of Beijing ineligible to be CE: top Chinese official

Top mainland official cites 3-stage test under which any candidate who 'confronts' central government would fail to qualify for election

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 March, 2013, 11:03pm
UPDATED : Monday, 25 March, 2013, 7:45am
 

Poll

  • Yes: 79%
  • No: 21%
25 Mar 2013
  • Yes
  • No
Total number of votes recorded: 144

A top mainland official yesterday set the tone for the debate over Hong Kong's political reform by declaring that any members from the opposition camp who insist on confronting the central government cannot become the city's chief executive.

Despite declaring Beijing's "unswerving" commitment to universal suffrage by 2017, Qiao Xiaoyang, chairman of the Law Committee under the National People's Congress, also dropped the most significant hint so far about a screening mechanism being introduced ahead of the chief executive poll in 2017.

Qiao made the remarks in a closed-door seminar on the Basic Law, Hong Kong's mini-constitution, attended by almost 40 pro-establishment lawmakers in Shenzhen yesterday.

In the meeting - attended by the director of the State Council's Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, Wang Guangya, and the director of the liaison office in Hong Kong, Zhang Xiaoming - Qiao said the central government insisted that it was committed to Hong Kong achieving universal suffrage by 2017 in accordance with the Basic law.

It was "also unswerving that chief executive candidates must be persons who love the country and love Hong Kong, while the methods in the universal suffrage must match with the Basic Law and the decisions by the NPC Standing Committee", he said.

In a rare elaboration, Qiao admitted it would be difficult to write into law criteria for the "love country, love Hong Kong" notion, but those "who confront the central government" would fail to qualify, he said. This would be decided in three steps. "Firstly, the nomination committee will decide. Then the voters in Hong Kong will decide. Lastly, the central government will decide whether to appoint [the candidate] or not. Every person has a scale in their hearts," Qiao said.

He then referred to the opposition camp, an apparent reference to pan-democrats, and ruled them out of the race.

"As long as they insist on confronting the central government, they cannot become the chief executive," he said. "One day, when they give up going against the central government, and prove by their actions they will not harm the interests of the country and Hong Kong, the door is open for them."

A lawmaker who attended the meeting said Qiao cited at least one article written by former Democratic Party chairman Albert Ho Chun-yan, who stood against Leung Chun-ying for chief executive in 2012. In an article published in a Chinese-language newspaper, Ho called for an end to one-party rule.

Qiao said candidates had to be nominated by a newly formed nominating committee "as a whole", instead of by individual committee members, as in previous chief executive elections.

Pan-democrats said Qiao's explanation paved the way for a screening mechanism ahead of the chief executive poll.

 

 


What Qiao Xiaoyang Said

On the pro-democracy camp:
As long as they insist on confronting the central government, they cannot become the chief executive. One day when they give up going against the central government, and prove by their actions they will not harm the interests of the country and Hong Kong, the door is open for them to become the chief executive.

On the reasons for not accepting a chief executive candidate who confronts the central government:
If a person who confronts the central government becomes the chief executive, it can be expected that the tension between the two governments will be heightened, the close connection between Hong Kong and the mainland will be damaged, and that Hong Kong society will be torn apart.

On how to judge suitable candidates:
Firstly, the nomination committee will decide. Then the voters in Hong Kong will decide. Lastly, the central government will decide whether to appoint [the candidate] or not. Every person has a scale in their hearts.

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hard times !
opponents of Beijing authorites (the Chinese Communist Party government) can never be our chief executive candidates---this new bottom-line has not been listed in the Basic Law.And so-called 'love China, love Hong Kong' also not listed in it too.Late Deng Xiao-ping said that most Hongkongers love the nation and Hong Kong.Besides,what is the critieria of 'love nation and love Hong Kong' ? I wonder.There should never be a screening scheme, not to say a bottom-line set well before a formal consultation is launched by the Leung administration which is deliberately prolong it. Right ? Maybe all pan-democratic voters should seriously consider boycotting the election by not voting ----just like the pro-establishment elements boycotted the referendum in 2010 !
mcheung
Agreed 100%. It's a waste of our tax dollar to support the part time, incompetent Legco members who have their own hidden agenda, rather than for the well being of ours.
hard times !
No one with sense in Hong Kong will believe that the ones who harm the interests of Hong Kong are the pan-democrats who support a geniune universal suffrage for the election of our chief executive in 2017 and a universal suffrage of our lawmakers in 2020.What is wrong with that ? Only when our leader and all our lawmakers are directly-elected by all qualified voters in town.will they be responsible/accoutable to us in their policies and acts plus words.Once their performances are below average or expectation,they will be forced to step down through the votes of the voters in the next election or even be cast no-confidence vote against them.Right ?
ed_kwok
Qiao makes a lot of sense. I wish our democrat lawmakers can understand there is nothing to be gained by open hostility towards the system. Best thing to do is to be part of the system and work hard to gain credibility. When a position of power and influence is achieved the system can be change from the inside. This requires hard work and perseverance, something that our hard-fighting democrats have in spades. It also requires lawmakers to resist the personal benefits that the system brings.
dienamik
Hong Kong should not even have SAR status. That should be removed immediately. The people of Hong Kong have shown themselves to be immature ungrateful little brats and willing pawns for foreign forces.
johndoe
Anyone who does not love 12,000 floating pigs cannot run for CE.
lucifer
I think this is what we all expected. COme 2017, if they insist on this kind of "choose from our approved list of candidates" model, the people in Hong Kong will find it unacceptable. I don't believe they will take it lying down….stay tuned.
ianson
Qiao and his buddies have zero respect for the agreement which handed Hong Kong back to China. What's new? The entire "Communist" Party is a lie, starting from its very name. If they had any decency at all, they'd honestly rename it the "Rape and Pillage While Lying Through Our Grinning Teeth Party".
toxxygen
Maybe Hong Kong people should decide which candidates love Hong Kong and country most by universal suffrage.
Sunny
Isn’t it strange that they are combining the insistence of ‘loving the country’ with accepting the government and regime? If you are against and criticise the government, even if they are corrupt, then, in their opinion, it means you don’t love the country? Both are separate matters. Can a person not love their country, but be against the government, especially if the regime is corrupt and based on authoritarian control? This is just further control methods to ensure a corrupt ‘one-party-rule’ remains as it expands its territory in Asia, thus, further tightening its control and limiting the freedoms of its people. Why even vote, when it is screened and processed to suit the agenda of the CCP?

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