Sina
Edition: CHINA ASIA USA EUROPE AFRICA
Home > HK
Tuesday, November 8, 2016, 01:37

Ex-senior official supports clarification of Basic Law

By Li Yinze and Dara Wang

Hong Kong’s former home affairs chief Patrick Ho Chi-ping said on Monday the interpretation of the SAR’s Basic Law by the nation’s top legislature is appropriate.

He strongly condemned the outrageous stunts by separatist lawmakers-elect Sixtus Leung Chung-hang and Yau Wai-ching during the solemn swearing-in at the first meeting of this legislative term.

“Their offensive behavior has greatly hurt the feelings of the 1.3 billion Chinese people, and the insulting language they used should not be tolerated,” he said.

Ho said that the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress’ (NPCSC) interpretation of the Basic Law will not affect Hong Kong’s judicial independence.

NPCSC has the power of interpreting the Basic Law. NPCSC has set out broad principles with regard to the interpretation of Article 104 , and courts in the city have the authority to uphold local ordinances. NPCSC interpretation and judiciary independence co-exist in the city, he said.

The Legislative Council should not degenerate into a platform for separatists to advocate or promote “independence of Hong Kong”

Patrick Ho Chi-ping, Hong Kong’s former secretary for home affairs

The Legislative Council should not degenerate into a platform for separatists to advocate or promote “independence of Hong Kong”, he said. Ho said there was no chance the two separatist lawmakers-elect could be validated as lawmakers.

NPCSC has made an interpretation to the Basic Law on its own initiative this time. This indicates the grave concern of the central government about Hong Kong’s current situation, he said.

Ho urged local education sector to provide useful guidance about the core values of the city and the limitation of freedom of speech. He added that unlimited freedom could lead to chaos.

“There should be no room for the discussion of ‘Hong Kong independence’ in schools,” he added. “Banning pro-independence activism on school campuses in Hong Kong does not threaten freedom of speech at all.”

Violence seems to have become a hallmark of pro-independence activists in Hong Kong, who act under the disguise of seeking free speech and freedom of assembly.

Sunday night saw hundreds of radical and pro-independence protesters occupying roads near the central government’s liaison office in Hong Kong, in an unlawful assembly against the NPCSC’s interpretation.

They repeatedly and forcefully charged the cordon line of police — despite multiple warnings. Some held bamboo poles and hurled bricks from the pavement to attack police officers.

Many legislators condemned the violence in a joint statement on Monday and supported Hong Kong police’s enforcement actions to restore public safety.

Jeffrey Lam Kin-fung, vice-president of Business and Professionals Alliance for Hong Kong, said the protest paralyzed traffic, endangered public safety. He said his organization strongly condemned such illegal acts.

Starry Lee Wai-king, chairwoman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, said chaos in society had been exacerbated by the misconduct of the two disgraced lawmakers-elect Yau Wai-ching and Sixtus Leung Chung-hang. The situation had been worsened by opposition lawmakers who helped the pair to aggressively storm LegCo meetings and disrupt the chamber.

Contact the writers at yinzeli@chinadailyhk.com

Latest News