Claudia Mo slams cowardly stance on clarifying 'one party' advocacy

Local | 16 May 2018 7:28 pm

Pro-democracy lawmaker Claudia Mo Man-ching today accused the government of being too "cowardly" to say outright whether people could be banned from running for Legco if they call for an end to one-party rule on the mainland – as pro-Beijing figures have claimed – alleging that officials are waiting for further instructions from the central government.

In a question in Legco, Mo asked the Government whether it was unlawful or unconstitutional in Hong Kong for people to make such calls, and if it was, could the administration provide details of the relevant laws.

In his reply, Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Secretary Patrick Nip, told lawmakers it seemed illogical that any of them would oppose the mainland's political system, given that they are part of the establishment.

But Nip did not make it clear whether calls for an end to China's one-party rule breach any laws.

"As to whether it is illegal to say this or that, in Hong Kong we act in accordance with the law. In relation to what political figures have said, they will have to abide by relevant regulations so I'm not going to say what will happen if this or that is said," Nip told councilors.

After the meeting, Mo told RTHK's Jimmy Choi that she believes the SAR Government is too afraid to clarify the matter until it gets a firm answer from Beijing.

"You could see from his [Nip's] reply, after a lot of gibberish, he didn't actually say whether it's illegal or whether it's unconstitutional to shout that slogan 'end one-party rule'. So I think they're getting cold feet," Mo said.

"This government is so deplorable, its behavior is so very cowardly, that it didn't dare to actually answer properly the question. I think they're trying to make room for possible, future political persecution."

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