• Wed
  • Sep 17, 2014
  • Updated: 4:04pm
NewsHong Kong

Fanny Law opposes arbitrary screening for chief executive race in 2017

Executive councillor Fanny Law would like to see three candidates running for chief executive in 2017 under ‘one man, one vote’ system

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 28 August, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 01 September, 2013, 7:23pm

Chief executive candidates who hold different views to Beijing should not be arbitrarily screened out of the election, an adviser to Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying says.

Fanny Law Fan Chiu-fun, an executive councillor who was director of Leung's transitional office after he was elected last year, said she favoured a three-horse race when the "one man, one vote" system is introduced for the 2017 election.

She told the South China Morning Post: "It would be practically impossible to screen out some candidates arbitrarily."

In March, the chairman of the National People's Congress Law Committee, Qiao Xiaoyang , said the chief executive must not be confrontational towards the central government. Pan-democrats saw Qiao's comment as the clearest hint yet that a screening mechanism would be set up to bar candidates deemed unacceptable to Beijing from running in 2017.

Law said many pan-democratic politicians were not confrontational towards Beijing. She said the nominating committee should assess the calibre of candidates based on criteria such as competence, public acceptance and ties with Beijing, before short-listing candidates for a one man, one vote ballot.

Candidates should pledge allegiance to Beijing when they sought nominations for the race, she said.

Last week, fellow executive councillor Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee told the Post that dividends brought by universal suffrage, such as a stronger mandate for the chief executive, would be lost if the electoral or nominating method was rigged to rule out certain candidates.

Article 45 of the Basic Law calls for a "broadly representative" nominating committee to propose chief executive candidates for election "in accordance with democratic procedures".

Law said she preferred having three candidates put forward by the nominating committee.

"If there are more than three, it would be difficult for voters to understand their platforms," she said.

Law agreed that Civic Party legislator Ronny Tong Ka-wah's proposal to let voters rank their choices for a leader, instead of picking the winner via a simple majority, was a feasible option.

Under such a system, voters rank the candidates in order of preference. The person who secures more than half the votes wins; otherwise, the one with the fewest ballots is eliminated. The votes from the eliminated candidate are then added to the voters' second choices. This allocation process continues until one person receives more than half the votes.

"It can guarantee the election of the most acceptable candidate," Law said.

She agreed with a proposal to set up a platform comprising representatives from various sectors, similar to the Basic Law Consultative Committee in the 1980s, to forge consensus on political reform before the start of a public consultation.



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This article is now closed to comments

I find it pretty insulting on my intelligence to say "If there are more than three, it would be difficult for voters to understand their platforms" .
Believing in your own words Mrs **** Law (look what SCMP is doing to the name), we must believe that you have limited capabilities when there are more than 3 options tabled in front of you. Shouldn't you better step down as executive councillor with such limited abilities ?
How sweet. The masters want to make sure we do not worry our pretty little heads with too many choices on policies so they will decide who will present planned policies to us. It is good to know that the Masters want to make sure we do not overtax our little brains. Thank you, Communist Party, for caring so much for us.
the sun also rises
I am pleasantly surprised that Ms **** Law ( a pro-Beijing Leung's advisor) would like to see more than two candidates running for the chief executive post in 2017 and there should not be any screening mechanism to filter out unfavourable candidates (such ast those from the pan-democratic camp).Her view is now becoming more open-minded.It is indeed a type of progress.Hoping that she would reflect her views on chief executive election to Beijing authorities at suitable time and venues.
Nominating criteria should include "ties with Beijing"? Moronic.
What a joke. Law's suggestion of only 3 choices can then be extended to public exams using multiple-choice questions to test students only that the choices be limited to 3 instead of 5 to make it easier for the students.
Good idea - but perhaps monkeys would be cheaper?
Without a doubt I think Beijing has changed their thinking. What choice do they have? Screening out pan-democrats is a total non starter and will get vetoed. This'll be quite an embarrassment for Beijing and will guarantee that HK will be ungovernable.

Allowing an open ballot which allows pan-democratic candidates to run for CE will guarantee that HKers will become loyal patriots.
"It would be practically impossible to screen out some candidates arbitrarily."
"If there are more than three, it would be difficult for voters to understand their platforms," she said.
So it is not a case that this leftover of the Colonial era truly opposes screening out of "unacceptable" candidates, but the practicality of it that prompted her remarks.
What arrogance to think that we mere voters would be unable to understand candidates' platforms if more than three are nominated. We do have ten digits and CAN actually count up to ten you know?
May I suggest one other way? May be we can use neutral headhunter companies to recruit our CEO for the HKSAR.


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