Attempt to clarify 'confuses'
Lawyers at yesterday's proceedings said the ruling had created more confusion.
Most felt the court was at pains to avoid referring to the word 'clarification' in its statement.
'The position of the Government was that there was nothing to clarify, that it understood the judgment and its implications and so did everybody else,' said the vice-chairman of the Bar Association, Philip Dykes SC.
Association council member Clive Grossman SC said: 'They didn't use the word 'clarification' but they explained their judgment in such a way as to satisfy those people who didn't properly understand the judgment.' The association said it 'regrets the Court of Final Appeal was placed in this position and was obliged to re-visit a judgment which all parties accepted as correct and which required no further explanation'.
The Law Society welcomed the clarification. It said the Court of Final Appeal made its decision after considering full arguments by the parties concerned.
Barrister and legislator Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee said the ruling raised more doubts than it settled.