Date
11 December 2017
Pan-democrats will launch a campaign opposing the government's co-location arrangement for the Express Rail Link. Photo: RTHK
Pan-democrats will launch a campaign opposing the government's co-location arrangement for the Express Rail Link. Photo: RTHK

Pan-democrats form group to campaign against co-location plans

A concern group formed by pan-democrats said it is drafting a document to oppose the government’s co-location arrangement for the Express Rail Link.

Legislator Tanya Chan, one of the conveners, said the group will be officially launched next week, news website hk01.com reports.

Chan said the group will hold online media campaigns and face-to-face meetings with the public to explain why the government’s proposals are against the interests of Hongkongers.

Apart from Chan, members of the group include fellow lawmakers Claudia Mo, Fernando Cheung Chiu-hung, Siu Ka-chun, Eddie Chu Hoi-dick, as well as former legislator Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee and Edward Yiu Chung-yim, who was recently disqualified for invalid oath-taking.

Mo said they must respond to the government’s brainwashing campaign, noting that it deliberately rolled out the co-location arrangement while the Legislative Council was in recess.

Hongkongers must understand that they will lose their freedom by agreeing to the co-location proposals, which seek to provide convenience to mainland authorities at the expense of the “one country, two systems” principle, Mo said.

Chu was quoted as saying by Apple Daily that it is important for the public to know that they have a choice, even if the government is saying the opposite.

Earlier this week, Maria Tam Wai-chu, a local deputy to the National People’s Congress, said the government’s co-location arrangement is legally sound as it is backed by Articles 118 and 119 of the Basic Law.

Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said Tam’s references were far-fetched and irrelevant. He argued that if the two articles can be used to support the co-location plans from a legal standpoint, any article in the Basic Law can be deployed to allow Beijing’s direct intervention in Hong Kong affairs.

Leong stressed that the essence of the Basic Law is that the Chinese national law should not be carried out in Hong Kong territory.

Assigning a section of the West Kowloon terminus of the rail link out of Hong Kong’s jurisdiction is a blatant violation of the Basic Law, he said.

Wong Ching-tak, student union president at the University of Hong Kong, said student unions from the eight public universities would like to participate in the group’s campaign against the co-location plans.

– Contact us at [email protected]

EL/YH/BN/CG

EJI Weekly Newsletter

Please click here to unsubscribe