The pan-democrats have hit out at Lau Kong-wah, undersecretary for constitutional and mainland affairs, for telling a group of Hongkongers the democratic camp will be to blame if there is no universal suffrage in 2017, Ming Pao Daily reported Wednesday.
At a community forum organized by the pro-establishment Kowloon Federation of Associations Tuesday night, Lau told a senior citizen to ask the pan-democrats if Hong Kong would have universal suffrage while the senior citizen is still alive.
Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor and Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Raymond Tam Chi-yuen spoke at the same event, which about 800 people attended.
Lau and Tam told the audience it will be genuine universal suffrage if people can vote in the election.
The audience, holding posters and banners, was supportive of the government’s proposed plan for political reform.
However, lawmaker Paul Tse Wai-chun said the overwhelming support at Tuesday’s event may not reflect the reality, as he believes 30 percent of the public are firmly against the government proposal, while 40 percent have adopted a wait-and-see stance.
Tse has urged government officials to lobby for the support of the 40 percent of the public with a neutral stance.
Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said the government is starting a public opinion war and trying to make the pan-democrats the scapegoat if the government proposal is voted down in the Legislative Council.
Leong said the people of Hong Kong will not accept “universal suffrage” like that in North Korea, where everyone votes but only one candidate, approved by the ruling front, appears on the ballot.
Economic Synergy lawmaker Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen said the government could conduct large-scale public opinion polls before Legco votes on the proposal, so that both the pan-democratic and the pro-establishment camps could consider the public’s wishes.
– Contact us at [email protected]