With the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress due to announce by the end of this month a decision on the 2017 Hong Kong Chief Executive election process, speculation is mounting that Beijing may take a tough stance on the candidate nomination system.
Some mainland media reports quoted unnamed officials as saying that Beijing will insist that a person must gain the support of at least half the nomination committee members to be qualified as a candidate, RTHK reported Monday.
The Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, a pro-Beijing group, agreed that such a threshold will help reflect the committee’s overall will.
Alan Hoo, chairman of the Basic Law Institute, pointed out that as Beijing has been insisting that nothing can be above the Basic Law, there should in fact be no nomination threshold. Under Clause 45 of the Basic Law, there should be room for a certain number of seats on the nomination committee to be given to the public, he said.
Meanwhile, Democratic Party chairwoman Emily Lau said on Monday that she is set to meet David Wong, an NPC representative from Hong Kong, to discuss the political reform issue. She hopes Wong can pass on her party’s appeals on the matter to Beijing.
Lau said she expects the Hong Kong government to set up a meeting between her party and officials from Beijing’s Liaison Office in the city or the central government.
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