The government’s political reform plan will help Hong Kong take a historic step in democratic development, acting Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said on Thursday, making a fresh pitch for the proposal related to the 2017 election for the city’s top leader.
Speaking at the Boao Youth Forum for Asia (Hong Kong), Lam stressed that the electoral reform package is both constitutional and fair, Apple Daily reported.
Hong Kong is now at a critical moment in constitutional development, Lam was quoted as saying on the second and final day of the Boao forum that was held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The reform proposal is “constitutional, legal, fair, reasonable and feasible,” she said at the forum that had the theme “Asia in Restructuring: Vision and Action of Youth”.
During the event, which was attended by dozens of prominent people from the fields of politics, economics and culture, Lam was briefly disrupted by a group of university student union representatives who chanted slogans against the reform package and shouted that it was “doomed to failure.”
They were subsequently evicted out of the venue by security guards before Lam continued her speech. Some of them asked Lam to visit universities in the city and listen to what young people have to say about the reform.
Zhang Xiaoming, head of Beijing’s Liaison Office in Hong Kong, said at the same forum that the 2017 election is not only about a leap of Hong Kong’s democratic development but also about the relationship between the city and the central government, as well as national sovereignty, national security and national development interests.
The younger generation should keep a broad perspective and act in the city’s interests, he said.
In other developments, six major big business groups said on Thursday that most enterprises back the administration’s political reform package.
A survey showed that nine in ten respondents backed the government’s plan while about 6 percent expressed opposition, they said.
The poll was conducted jointly by the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, Chinese General Chamber of Commerce, Chinese Manufacturers’ Association, Federation of Hong Kong Industries, Real Estate Developers Association, and the Hong Kong Chinese Importers’ & Exporters’ Association between April 18 and May 15.
The survey, which took in the opinions of 2,561 business people, found that 91 percent of the respondents agreed that Legco should pass the reform package if that’s the wish of most citizens.
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