Qian denies NPC bar on Democrats
LINDA CHOY in Beijing and FUNG WAI-KONG
Charges that China is attempting to bar members of the Democratic Party from the 1998 election to the National People's Congress were rejected by Vice-Premier Qian Qichen yesterday.
Mr Qian said candidates seeking a seat on China's national legislature must recognise the Chinese constitution and comply with the election method to be passed by the NPC plenum.
The proposed method is that candidates would need the endorsement of 10 members of an electorate to be formed by the Selection Committee, provisional legislature and Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.
Asked whether that would create obstacles for the Democrats, Mr Qian said: 'There is no restriction on their standing for election.' Democratic Party vice-chairman Anthony Cheung Bing-leung was deeply disappointed by the undemocratic electoral rules, saying: 'The composition of the election committee is restrictive and unrepresentative.'