The Legislative Council is demanding two disqualified legislators return HK$1.86 million (US$239,817) in salaries and allowances paid to them.
The Legco Commission wants the money back from Youngspiration’s Sixtus Baggio Leung and Yau Wai-ching after they were disqualified by the High Court from taking office over their improper oath-taking, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
The ruling followed an interpretation of Article 104 of the Basic Law by China’s legislature which also effectively kicked them out.
The commission is seeking HK$930,000 from each of the pair, representing their salaries from Oct. 1 and expenses.
Commission member Dennis Kwok said he strongly opposed backdating the sum to Oct. 1.
Instead, he said the date of reckoning should be Oct. 12 when the duo took their oaths which were subsequently invalidated.
The 13-member commission, which includes four members from the pan-democratic camp, was split on the decision, according to the report.
Legco chairman Andrew Leung said the secretariat will issue a demand note after the Court of Appeal has ruled on an appeal by the duo.
Leung said reasonable payment terms will be offered. Sixtus Leung and Yau could also contest the commission’s decision.
Andrew Leung said the funds are public money and therefore could not be taken lightly.
Sixtus Leung said it would be an “unreasonable expectation” to hope that the commission, which is dominated by pro-establishment lawmakers, would make a reasonable decision.
He also criticized the commission for announcing the decision before the Court of Appeal has made a ruling on the pair’s disqualification.
The Legco secretariat said the pair received a monthly salary of HK$95,000 each plus HK$834,500 each in office expenses.
– Contact us at [email protected]