Legislative Council president Jasper Tsang Yok-sing dismissed as “politically incorrect” predictions said to be made by an authoritative figure close to Beijing, am730 reported Tuesday.
The person reportedly said the consequences if Beijing’s proposal for electoral reform in Hong Kong is voted down in the Legislative Council would be that Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying will get a second term of office and that he will move to legislate the controversial security provisions of Article 23 of the Basic Law.
Tsang said such a statement, widely reported in the media Monday, would, in fact, be embarrassing for the central government and would not help improve the chances of the official proposal being passed.
He questioned the authoritativeness of the source, since it would be politically incorrect for anyone in the pro-establishment camp to suggest it would be a disaster if Leung secures a second term of office and succeeds in legislating the Article 23 provisions.
National People’s Congress deputy Rita Fan said the central government would not use the threat of a second term of office for Leung as a bargaining chip to obtain support from pan-democrats for its proposal for electoral reform.
She said the outcome could be more predictable if the next chief executive is elected under the existing mechanism. However, it would be harder to predict who will win if there is universal suffrage, she said.
Former chief secretary Henry Tang, who is a Hong Kong delegate to the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, urged Hongkongers to discuss electoral reform in a positive and proactive way.
Legislator Wong Kwok-kin from the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions said the so-called authoritative source lacks weight and that such rumors have been circulating for over a year now.
Executive Council member Starry Lee said she has heard such rumors before and said they should not interfere with the logical thinking of the public on the subject.
– Contact us at [email protected]