Former chief secretary Henry Tang Ying-yen said the idea of Hong Kong independence is nothing but a “red herring” meant to draw the people’s attention away from the real situation.
Speaking at a seminar on Wednesday, Tang, who is a member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, said the Basic Law has made it very clear that Hong Kong is part of China, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
As such, there is absolutely no room for any discussion on Hong Kong independence, and talking about the subject is a total waste of time as there is no way it can be realized whether from the perspective of law, sentiment or ethics, he said.
Tang, who lost to Leung Chun-ying in the 2012 chief executive election, called on schools to guide students in the right way.
He said discussions about Hong Kong independence should not be allowed on campus, just like incest and other immoral topics.
He also dismissed the idea that CY Leung is “father of Hong Kong independence” as some people call him for raising the issue during his policy address last year.
Tang’s remarks came after Secretary for Education Eddie Ng Hak-kim invited school sponsoring bodies and the Committee on Home-School Co-operation to a meeting on Tuesday to discuss how to prevent the ideology of Hong Kong independence from entering campus.
Ng flew to Beijing for a “regular work meeting” with officials of the Ministry of Education on Thursday.
As he has never visited Beijing for such a meeting since he assumed the post in 2012, observers speculated that he would be discussing the independence issue with central officials.
Ng is set to meet with media in Beijing on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Legislative Council president Jasper Tsang Yok-sing said there is no reason to ban the discussion of Hong Kong independence on campus but the point is that teachers should not take the lead.
Justice Secretary Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung said the government will deal with any situation related to the discussion of the independence issue on campus and during the Legco election campaign according to law.
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