Date
16 August 2017
Hong Kong protesters stage a sit-in in Central to demand genuine democratic reform. The sit-in followed the July 1 march marking the 17th anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China. Photo:Bloomberg
Hong Kong protesters stage a sit-in in Central to demand genuine democratic reform. The sit-in followed the July 1 march marking the 17th anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China. Photo:Bloomberg

Occupy Central action hinges on NPC decision

Occupy Central will launch a planned civil disobedience in Hong Kong if the National People’s Congress (NPC), China’s legislature, decides on an election model for the 2017 chief executive election that is short of its expectations.

The group and its pro-democracy allies are demanding genuine universal suffrage based on the result of last week’s unofficial referendum which drew more than 780,000 voters.

The NPC is expected to announce its decision in August or September during its annual session.

Occupy Central co-founder Chan Kin-man said the timing of the action depends on whether the NPC will rule out nomination of candidates by the public or by political parties, Apple Daily reported Monday.

“It’s difficult to draw a bottom line now. We can only wait and see,” Chan said.

The central government prefers screening by a nominating committee along patriotic lines.

Meanwhile, Democratic Party chairwoman Emily Lau said the action could come as early as July if the Hong Kong government comes up with a proposal with any screening element.

She said her party will discuss preparations with Occupy Central on Tuesday.

Civic Party chief Alan Leong called on democrats to push for public or party nomination but rejected a proposal by fellow legislator Leung Kwok-hung for mass resignations to force universal suffrage.

Cyd Ho from the Labour Party said democrats should sit down and agree on the best response to the situation.

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