• Sun
  • Sep 21, 2014
  • Updated: 10:32pm
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.

Share

More on this story

For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive
 
 

 

45

This article is now closed to comments

johndoe
Anyone who does not love 12,000 floating pigs cannot run for CE.
Dai Muff
So basically, if you will stand up for Hong Kong's interests when they conflict with Beijing's (and I don't mean window-dressing with Communist blessing), you will never become CE. Which means all we will ever get are yes-men or hidden Party apparatchiks.
Democracy Communist style. Have to love it.
hard times !
if an election of which its result is already known, it is not a geniune universal suffrage indeed ! What we Hongkongers (at least most of them ) really want is never a faked universal suffrage but a true democracy according to the standard of the United Nations.In 2004, this old guy ----a political conservative one---disallowed we Hong Kong people to have a unversal suffrage in 2007 of our chief executive and 2008 of our lawmakers through an interpretation of the Basic Law.Now he tells us that there is a screening scheme which never listed in the Basic Law-----the elected Chief Executive should be one who loves his nation (or the Party actually) and Hong Kong plus can never be one who is an oppositionist in this city.
rpasea
Why did anyone expect something different? Beijing will never allow elections unless they know the outcome. Look at the recent election of Xi: some 2000 votes for and 3 votes against with 9 abstentions (I think the count was). My first thought was who would dare vote against or abstain...then I realized that these dissenting votes were organized by the Chinese Communist Party to give the illusion that dissent is tolerated and the election was not a complete sham. Give it up people of HK and get the foreign passports ready.
HK-Lover
Anyone who would have expected anything else is naive.
1. Beijing has to understand that anyone who loves his country does not have to like or accept the ruling party. One may fight the ruling party just because he loves the country.
2. China's system is a one-party system and this one-party is the communist party. Consequently the communist party is the system.
3. In many most developed democratic countries (the US does not fit that criteria necessarily) political parties that declare opposition to the system and want to over-through the system are not permitted to stand for elections or even prohibited as such. This is not to be mistaken for parties who want to over-through the ruling party. They are part of the system.
4. In Hong Kong we will end up with some kind of mix of universal suffrage, democracy and big brother ruling. Don't forget, we are 2 systems and these systems are antithetic. It needs to be a compromise which both sides can live with (and Beijing has the bigger say).
5. If the Democrats want to have any sort of say they need to learn to speak Beijing's language. At the end it's the results that count and not the means. Start to use Beijing's very own words and way for your (our) course and they will have difficulties to reject you.
HK-Explorer
Hopefully Hong Kong people are happy with the vetting of candidates. This is definitely a move in the right direction and the China government allowing elections is a big thing for them to do. It shows that they are open to the idea of giving the people the right to vote.
This will have even bigger consequences to China as it shows that if HK elections go well then slowly China will move the same way. Hopefully in the next 10 to 15 years both HK and China will have full and free elections. we just need to allow the government to move slowly towards this and not protest on every little point. (that will just take us backwards)
ejmciii
It is unsurprising that the Communist Party would determine that universal suffrage means you get to elect whomever they tell you will be your new overlord. I am sure the Taiwanese will love that bit.
RobinDeCaro
BE REALISTIC
1.A civilized society cannot bear the cost of letting rotten legislative members or persons that hold office in the government to indulge in deploying humiliating and abusive languages to pursuit their goals;not to mention violence and/or destructive actions.
2.Be realistic,preliminary selection is simply to avoid the embarrassment of not appointing CE elected by universal sufferage.Advice you before hand,do not have a false dream;as it is the situation world wide,political parties nominates candidates,not by the people at large.
maecheung
HK people need to be realistic. Even in the freest society in the world such as USA, where any person has the right to stand for election, and almost all of them has to be nominated by political parties, and go through the Primaries. I don't recall the USA has ever elected a President without affiliated to a political party.
dynamco
frankly they have probably had enough of banana throwing morons who consistently get ejected from Legco and who fail to represent the people of HKG , just their pathetic antics, and they deem HKG Legco members and their actions are not responsible enough to allow sensible democratic rule and duty of care that is required under the Legco oaths.
The Mainland's main target is reunification with Taiwan and HKG and Macau are supposed to be the example that it can work.
Meanwhile they should pay Legco members by the hour attended at Legco meetings - get thrown out = no income. Legco members should be full time, not part time lackeys with other jobs.

Pages

 
 
 
 
 

Login

SCMP.com Account

or