Date
11 December 2016
During a hearing of the High Court, senior counsel Benjamin Yu said the CY Leung administration believes the issues should be resolved within Hong Kong's judicial system. Photo: AFP
During a hearing of the High Court, senior counsel Benjamin Yu said the CY Leung administration believes the issues should be resolved within Hong Kong's judicial system. Photo: AFP

Govt has not asked for Beijing interpretation, High Court told

The government has not asked Beijing to interpret the Basic Law in connection with the oath-taking controversy involving two localist lawmakers-elect.

This emerged on Thursday at the High Court, where a judicial review launched by Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying and the Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung was being heard.

Senior counsel Benjamin Yu, representing the chief executive and the justice secretary, said the administration has asked the National People’s Congress whether it has any plans for an interpretation, but has yet to receive a response, public broadcaster RTHK reports.

The review is against an earlier decision by Legislative Council President Andrew Leung to allow Youngspiration lawmakers-elect Sixtus “Baggio” Leung Chung-hang and Yau Wai-ching to take their oath of office again.

Yu dismissed as “totally unfounded” allegations that CY Leung’s administration has actively sought an interpretation in an attempt to bar the two from being sworn in.

He said the SAR government believes the issues can and should be resolved within the SAR’s judicial system.

To say that the administration has no confidence in Hong Kong courts is speculation “farthest from the truth”, he said.

But he said the NPC Standing Committee may discuss the matter in its bi-monthly meeting and this may lead to an interpretation.

Andrew Leung had earlier decided to allow the Youngspiration duo to take their oath again after their first one was declared invalid because they mispronounced and added words that were seen as a display of their refusal to abide by the principles of the Basic Law.

Later, however, the Legco chief decided to wait for the results of the petition for a judicial review before acting on the oath-taking issue.

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