Holding public forums when there's only one candidate for top job would not be fair, electors say Any serious public discussion between chief executive candidates will have to wait until nominations close in mid-February. Some Election Committee members say that until that happens, it would be unfair to hold public forums with one candidate. Chief executive hopeful Alan Leong Kah-kit wants public discussions in which candidates' policies can be held up for scrutiny, but that cannot happen until Donald Tsang Yam-kuen and any other candidates declare their hand. While they won't be meeting in public, Mr Leong and his party colleagues were joined by Mr Tsang for dinner last night - for the first time since the Civic Party was launched in March. Mr Leong said it was a 'normal, usual, social occasion between the chief executive and lawmakers', adding that the dinner had been arranged months after a request was made by the party. Eric Cheung Tat-ming, an Election Committee member from the legal sector who is considered a supporter of Mr Leong, said a forum with the candidates may have to wait until the end of the nomination period in February. 'Practically, the arrangement [for a forum before the candidates are nominated] could be difficult. As a matter of fairness, we would need to allow anyone who declared an intention to run to participate.' Peter Cheung Kwok-che, president of the Social Workers' General Union and an Election Committee member, said he would only hold such a forum after all the candidates announced their candidacies, so it certainly would not be held before February. Leung Siu-cheong, an elector from the information technology sector belonging to the pan-democratic camp, said it was unlikely a forum could be held until after the nomination period, since Mr Tsang may not announce his candidacy until the last minute. The final submission date for chief executive candidates and a date for nomination of official candidates have yet to be set. Sources close to Beijing have said that Mr Tsang, who is expected to win another term, will announce his candidacy in mid-February. Civic Party lawmaker Ronny Tong Ka-wah said they did not want to be held hostage by Mr Tsang's timetable, but there was nothing he could do. 'There's no need to wait for Mr Tsang because he's the incumbent. If we hold debates, we can always invite him as the current policymaker. Everyone knows he is going to run, so there is no need to pretend that he isn't. 'But if he doesn't come, then there's not a whole lot we can do.' Mr Leong said: 'I'm ready all the time. If some feel they need to wait until [Mr Tsang] declares his candidacy, it's not up to me to dictate how they should conduct themselves.' Mr Leong requires at least 100 nominations from the Election Committee to run for chief executive. Yesterday, he said some committee members had said they would meet him individually.