Date
17 November 2017
Ronny Tong (left picture) says pan-democrats should ease their hard line on electoral reform. Tik Chi-yuen (right) agrees that a new political party will be a complicated job. Photo: HKEJ
Ronny Tong (left picture) says pan-democrats should ease their hard line on electoral reform. Tik Chi-yuen (right) agrees that a new political party will be a complicated job. Photo: HKEJ

Lawmaker Ronny Tong plans think tank as middle ground

Civic Party legislator Ronny Tong is planning a think tank to serve as a middle ground in Hong Kong politics.

Tong said the think tank is open to like-minded groups and individuals, Sing Tao Daily reported Monday.

He said he has met with dozens of people who have been encouraging him to form a centrist political party.

But he has resisted the idea to avoid being accused of trying to split the pro-democracy camp. Earlier, Tong had a rift with the party he co-founded over its direction.

He said a think tank will be less divisive while being able to adequately articulate the democracy camp’s message.

Tong said the pan-democrats — and Hong Kong in general — will end up losers if they don’t ease their hard line on the proposed framework for the 2017 chief executive election.

But with three months to go before it comes up before the Legislative Council, the proposal has “zero chance” of getting the vote of pan-democrats, he said.  

Tik Chi-yuen, former vice chairman of the Democratic Party who was scolded by his colleagues for breaking ranks over the Beijing-backed election reform, said he has discussed the planned think tank with Tong.

He said it should strive to keep communication lines with Beijing open while sticking to a universal suffrage agenda.

Tik agreed that a new political party will be a “complicated job” but said he would join it if it comes about as a way to contribute to society.

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