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  • Dec 19, 2014
  • Updated: 2:38am
Universal Suffrage
NewsHong Kong
UNIVERSAL SUFFRAGE

Senior Hong Kong officials should resign over Beijing’s reform decision: lawmaker

Civic Party leader Alan Leong says officials including Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor should examine their consciences and quit

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 02 September, 2014, 2:29pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 02 September, 2014, 5:52pm

Senior Hong Kong officials including Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor should examine their consciences and resign in a bid to make Beijing reconsider its tough restrictions on the vote for the city’s next leader, a pan-democrat lawmaker says.

Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said the drastic move was needed to rescue Hong Kong’s chances for greater democracy needed to solve the city’s governance crisis.

“If they were unsuccessful in persuading [Beijing], one of the options available is to leave and show their disappointment,” Leong told RTHK.

On Sunday, Beijing announced that two to three candidates would be allowed to contest the chief executive election in 2017, and hopefuls would need approval from a simple majority of a 1,200-strong nominating committee to qualify for the election.

Candidates that Beijing does not want on the ballot paper would be screened out on national security grounds.

The decision sparked protests, with pro-democracy lawmakers vowing to block the government’s plan in the Legislative Council if it followed Beijing’s framework.

Activists announced that an “era of civil disobedience” had begun at a large rally on Sunday evening.

The city’s leader, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, insisted on Tuesday that the framework would allow for a significant improvement on the current system in which a 1,200-strong committee selects the chief executive.

Leung called for calm. “I understand that some people are not satisfied with the decision,” Leung said. “However, what should we do after the intense emotion? How should we deal with the relationship between Hong Kong and the central government?”

Eric Cheung Tat-ming, a law lecturer at the University of Hong Kong, raised the prospect of an alternative election in 2017 now that genuine universal suffrage had been ruled out.

“We don’t have to follow the rules set by Beijing to choose between a small-circle election or to pocket imperfect universal suffrage,” Cheung said. “Instead, we can organise a shadow vote or unofficial referendum in 2017 to tell Beijing what kind of leader we want.”

Pro-establishment lawmaker Priscilla Leung Mei-fun said the framework was more restrictive than she had expected. She said the central government might have been responding to the pro-democracy Occupy Central movement.

Occupy organised an unofficial referendum on political reform in June and plans to stage a mass sit-in on Central streets to demand a genuine choice of candidates in 2017.

Maria Tam Wai-chu, a local deputy to National People’s Congress, said Sunday’s decision would ensure no time was wasted on reform proposals that stood no chance of being approved by Beijing.

“Beijing has the constitutional authority to reject any reform proposal that departs from the Basic Law [Hong Kong’s mini-constitution]. So it is better for them to make the decision clear earlier,” Tam said.

 

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This article is now closed to comments

anotherguy
Leong Kah Kit is out of his mind. This chap is living in his dreamland.
ronaldchao
@Mongkok_Wong
Are we talking about the same thing? I would have thought Carrie Lam hardly qualifies as a middle class civil servant by any stretch of imagination.
As I work and reside on the mainland, I don't really follow the Hong Kong media on a daily basis about the Occupy movement. Hence I am not aware of small children being used as "rioting shields". Nor am I aware of "young and innocent recruited pawns" being used to do the dirty work of whoever you're referring to. When I referred to Gandhi and King, I was just trying to say that civil, non-violent disobedience may not necessarily be "law-abiding" under any prevailing legal framework (in fact, most likely not), but I don't think that is a reason enough to condemn and mortify such activities.
josephclwu
The pan-dem party leaders should resign since their hard-ball tactics have failed to win concessions from CCP.
sipsip1238
Why would any of them resign, these same people entered the public service industry so that they can get a ever increasing pay without ever making any changes.
What happened here is that no changes were proposed or made, and they continue to be paid about 300k a month for doing nothing in the last year - isn't that every public servants dream?
If these people had any ounce of aspiration to actually do any work, they would've worked in the private sector, but to the private sector these same people are unemployable.
Even the youths who try to sell property around IFC are better than these people, at least they work for their wage.
A Kuro
Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit should be sent to Castle Peak Hospital, The sod is mad.
caractacus
If any of these officials has an ounce of conscience or integrity (an increasingly rare commodity now that some have their dirty fingers in the pie) they would resign.
Macaulay
@A Kuro
What is mad about asking political leaders who have betrayed their fellow citizens to resign?
It is a sane and correct suggestion.
And why add friction and disrespect by calling Alan Leong 'the sod'? Alan Leong gave a decent performance when he last stood for election.
The idea that we are making progress by proposing to adopt a system that may well prevent him from even being able to stand in future is absurd, and you should show more respect to decent people in politics.
ronaldchao
Tam Wai-chu's statement about Beijing having the constitutional authority to reject any reform proposal that departs from the Basic Law is certainly correct. Also, the right to interpret the Basic Law rests with the Standing Committee of the NPC. It follows that, like it or not, Hong Kong people never have any true say in how their CE will be elected. Yet, it doesn't take away from the fact that the decision handed down on Sunday falls far short of what a significant number of Hong Kong people would accept as a reasonable framework for universal suffrage. By the way, I doubt if anyone in their sound mind really expects officials like Carrie Lam would resign because of this, not that I am saying they don't have any conscience at all.
ejmciii
Not a chance. She has employment for life now. The masters have announced their edict. Their minions will force it down out throats and then they will be rewarded with long term jobs and seats at the national people's congress for being good overseers.
chuchu59
Now that aint no way to treat a lady Alan. Carrie may not have done a splendid job but she hasnt done anything seriously wrong either. Her job is not to persuade Beijing and it would neither be practical nor sensible to do it. I reckon she is only doing her job and while not excelling at it she has not seemingly been untruthful on any matters.

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