• Thu
  • Jul 24, 2014
  • Updated: 1:41am
NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

Pan-democrats cry foul over snub by visiting Basic Law pair

Mainland Basic Law pair will not be meeting democracy lawmakers during visit to city

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 20 November, 2013, 1:49pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 November, 2013, 9:01am
 

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Pan-democrats say they have been snubbed in arrangements for a visit to the city by two members of the Basic Law Committee to collect views on constitutional reform.

Lawmakers across the spectrum urged the Beijing officials to listen to a diverse range of opinions to pave the way for universal suffrage in 2017.

Basic Law Committee chairman Li Fei and vice-chairman Zhang Rongshun start their three-day visit this afternoon and have an itinerary filled with meetings with legal and other sectors - but not the pan-democrats.

Civic Party lawmakers Ronny Tong Ka-wah and Dennis Kwok will meet the pair tomorrow, but in their capacity as vice-chairmen of key Legco committees.

Twenty-three pan-democrats sent a letter to Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Yuet-ngor, who invited the legal duo, urging them not to set restrictions for reform. The consultation starts next month.

"The consultation will be meaningless if the central government lays down any candidate-screening framework," the letter said.

Lawmakers - including Beijing-loyalists - only knew of the visit when it was announced by the government late on Tuesday.

Li, who is also deputy secretary-general of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, and Zhang, vice-chairman of the Legislative Affairs Commission, will meet Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung and Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying today.

Tomorrow they will meet more than 100 representatives of various sectors at a lunch hosted by the chief secretary at Government House.

Among the guests will be Basic Law Committee deputy director Elsie Leung Oi-sie and representatives of business chambers and district councils.

Despite the Legislative Council's pivotal role in passing any reform proposal, only seven lawmakers chairing Legco and its key committees - the house committee, constitutional affairs, and legal panels - are invited

Tong, deputy chairman of the house committee, was looking forward to a "meaningful legal exchange".

A key focus of the reform debate is whether the public should be allowed to nominate chief executive candidates.

Democratic Party chairwoman Emily Lau Wai-hing said it was important the officials did not give the impression Beijing would take the lead in reform. "The matter should be spearheaded by the government and Legco," she said.

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caractacus
The same old sham exercise which results in the appointment and promotion of a gang of sycophants, the incompetent and the corrupt.
The PRC way will never produce an administration with talent or integrity.
tennisboy
Too bad to disappoint the Pan Democrat clowns as their paper mache projects to flaunt to the Mainland pair will go to waste.
chuchu59
Oh for crying out loud the pan-dems dont really believe they werent going to be snubbed so why the furore. Beijing wont involve them and their suggestion of 'public nomination' will never be accepted. Its not so much against the BL than not knowing which wild card the public will produce.
Its understandable that Beijing doesnt want some unwanted element to surface but then they must groom 'acceptable candidates' for the nominating committee to nominate. The previous two were bad and badder and if 2017 cooks up people of the same calibre people are likely to be fed up.
ssslmcs01
Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. When overseas jurisdictions offer advice on constitutional development Beijing is jumping up and down claiming interference in HONG KONG's affairs. I'm sure not a single one of those overseas leaders has a future chief executive of Hong Kong in mind. Beijing has certainly prepared a list of candidates that are suitable to them and prepared nameplates for the doors of the future leaders of Hong Kong. Talk about gross interference in our (Hong Kong's) internal affairs.
XYZ
They all sound like a bunch of socially inept parents angling for their child to receive an invitation to a quickly arranged birthday party for a tycoon's test tube offspring at McDonalds. Meanwhile, Hong Kong people suffer. Is it possible that even one of these people will simply tell these jumped-up kleptocrats to f-off? I live in despair.
321manu
It will be interesting to see whether those Beijing suits are here to listen, to dictate, or somewhere in between.
I imagine that Basic Law "seminar" will be a hot ticket. Watching a CCP 'constitutional expert' in action...it would be better than watching Sir Isaac Newton with an apple.
lucifer
What happened to Beijing's warning against "constitutionalism?" Now they are experts?
robdingwall
Considering that China doesn't even conform to its own constitution and "Rule of Law", how is it in any way capable of determining that of Hong Kong?
 
 
 
 
 

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