An oversight by Basic Law drafters led to the ambiguity surrounding the Election Committee's role, the DAB chief, Tsang Yok-sing, said yesterday. Under the Basic Law, the 800-strong Election Committee will choose six legislators to sit on the second legislature, due to be elected in September. But there has been a public debate on whether the committee will also choose the next chief executive in 2002. 'The problem is undeniably due to an oversight by the Basic Law Drafting Committee,' Mr Tsang, chairman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong, said on RTHK's Letter to Hong Kong programme yesterday. He challenged the argument that preventing the pre-handover Legco from continuing beyond the handover in 1997 had given rise to the problem. 'This explanation does not bear scrutiny,' Mr Tsang said. 'The problem would have been even more serious if the through-train had been in place, for the election of the second Legco would have taken place last year and the Election Committee would have been formed three years ahead of the chief executive's election.' Basic Law drafters had argued electoral arrangements were thrown out of step when the through-train did not come into being and the last legislature operating under British rule did not run through to 1999. Mr Tsang said it was more logical to say there would be only one Election Committee with its primary function being to choose the chief executive. 'That is why the committee is defined in the annexe [of the Basic Law] that prescribes the method for selecting the chief executive, and also why its term of office is made to coincide with that of the chief executive,' he said. The Basic Law says the committee to choose the chief executive will serve for five years, the same period of time as the chief executive's term of office. 'The Basic Law drafters wanted a number of seats in Legco to be indirectly elected by a body representing various sectors of the community. 'It is quite natural to assign this as an additional task for the Election Committee while it is in place,' Mr Tsang said.