Rules set for HK chief vote

Updated: 2014-09-01 07:43

By Kahon Chan in Hong Kong(Daily)

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Rules set for HK chief vote

Chief Executive CY Leung and other senior Hong Kong officials meet the media after the decision was announced on Sunday. [Photo by Edmond Tang / China Daily]

Top legislature says nominating committee will pick candidates for 2017 election

Sound Bites

The opposition must be mindful of Hong Kong's future development and not veto the constitutional reform package. They must realize that it's no good for the democratization process to stand still as the people look forward to electing the next CE through universal suffrage.

Tam Yiu-chung - Legislative Council member and chairman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong

Following the NPCSC decisions on the electoral method, there's still much room for discussion at the local legislation level. The democratic process will not come to a sudden halt. Universal suffrage can be achieved under a gradual and orderly process. All sides should keep calm and sit down to talk.

Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai - Hong Kong deputy to NPC

Hong Kong's pursuit of universal suffrage for the election of the chief executive has made a great leap forward. The NPCSC's decision to have two to three candidates in the race will ensure keen competition and Hong Kong people will certainly have real choices.

Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee - chairwoman of the New People's Party and former secretary for security

The NPCSC resolution is a major step for Hong Kong's democratic development. The SAR government should launch the second stage of the political reform consultation as soon as possible to give Hong Kong people time for thorough discussion.

The resolution may not be perfect for some people, but they must understand that this is not the final arrangement.

"Democracy is not to be achieved in one go, nor should it be unchangeable. It should keep improving with social development. There is still room for continuous perfection for the electoral arrangements."

Henry Tang Ying-yen - CPPCC Standing Committee member and former chief secretary

Candidates for Hong Kong's next chief executive must be endorsed by a majority of a nominating committee, the National People's Congress Standing Committee decided on Sunday.

Voters in the special administrative region can then pick their leader from those candidates, the standing committee ruled in a legally-binding resolution passed unanimously by the top legislature.

Zhang Dejiang, chairman of the standing committee, said that the resolution was significant for the implementation of the "one country, two systems" policy and the gradual democratization of Hong Kong

The top legislator appealed for rational discussion and concerted effort from Hong Kong people to realize the goal of universal suffrage in the 2017 election for chief executive.

Under the Basic Law, the nominating committee has the sole authority to put forward candidates for election as chief executive.

The committee must be consistent with the size, composition and methods of choosing its members with the electoral committee that chose the current chief executive in 2012.

Each candidate must be endorsed by a majority of the committee. Two or three candidates will be selected for the popular election, in which each registered voter in Hong Kong is entitled to pick a candidate.

The winner of the election will be subject to appointment by Beijing.

The Hong Kong government will now draft a detailed election proposal and consult the public in the coming months. A resolution detailing the reform will be given to the Legislative Council in the first quarter of next year.

Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung supported the decision and maintained that the full electorate in Hong Kong will no longer be bystanders in the city chief election if the Legislative Council endorses the amendment to the Basic Law.

"We cannot afford a standstill," Leung said. "Universal suffrage for the CE election through 'one person, one vote' by Hong Kong people is not only a big step forward for Hong Kong, but also a historic milestone for our country."

Leung, who is entitled to seek a second term in the next election, appealed for the peaceful expression of views as the city continues to refine the electoral setup, such as the chief executive's political affiliation and the minimum threshold to win the election.

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