Starry Lee Wai-king (center left, back row), chairwoman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB), and party colleague Holden Chow Ho-ding (center right), celebrate after winning two of the five "super seats" in the District Council (Second) functional constituency in Sunday's Legislative Council elections, along with fellow DAB members, including outgoing LegCo President Jasper Tsang Yok-sing (second left) and former DAB chairman Tam Yiu-chung (second right) at the central counting station at AsiaWorld-Expo on Monday. (Roy Liu/China Daily)
HONG KONG - Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying congratulated all 70 newly elected lawmakers on Monday, saying he is looking forward to a closer collaboration with them in future.
“With the goals to serve the community, safeguard the well-being of the public and promote Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability amongst others, the SAR government will endeavor to enhance communication and cooperation with the new term of the Legislative Council,” Leung said in a statement.
Viewing the election as a new start for better cooperation, the Chief Executive stressed that only by doing so can the administration and LegCo perform their respective roles in accordance with the Basic Law and establish a constructive working relationship.
He said the government will facilitate exchanges between all LegCo members and the central government as well as governments of mainland provinces and municipalities.
Leung also extended his gratitude to the outgoing lawmakers for their service in the fifth-term council.
The 2016 LegCo election was a mixed fortune for the patriotic camp, who has fought a difficult battle against the wave of radicalism and even separatism. It secured a total of 41 seats and remains the stable majority in the legislature, with some new lawmakers taking over from the old guard.
The camp has won 16 geographical seats, yet that is not enough to push for a revision of the LegCo Rules of Procedure and so filibusters and abuse of the quorum bell may continue to be a big problem in the new legislative term.
Meanwhile, six candidates with radical political approaches were elected into the next LegCo. This triggered concerns that conduct by extremists and separatist ideas may emerge in the legislature.
A spokesman from the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council urged the newly elected lawmakers to adhere to the “One Country, Two System” principle, as well as safeguard Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability.
The spokesman said the office had noted that a handful of groups and candidates openly advocated “Hong Kong independence” during the LegCo election.
But it reiterated that “Hong Kong independence” is against the country's constitution, the SAR’s Basic Law and other relevant laws and regulations of the city.
Such an ideology jeopardizes China’s sovereignty and national security, and will affect Hong Kong’s prosperity and safety. It was also against the interests of Hong Kong people, the spokesman said.
The office restated its stance that it opposes any form of “Hong Kong independence” activities. It firmly supports the Hong Kong SAR Government in imposing legal punishments for such activities, the spokesman noted.