Pan-dems look at other co-location ideas

Local | Sum Lok-kei 13 Sep 2017

The pro-democracy camp's co-location concern group is set to discuss six alternative proposals at a weekend seminar in a bid to find one that trumps the government's plan.

The government's proposal, announced in July, involves leasing areas within the West Kowloon terminus to the mainland for a "Mainland Port Area" in which mainland authorities will enforce national laws. The proposal has been fiercely opposed by the pro-democracy camp, which sees it as ceding land.

Civic Party lawmaker and concern group leader Tanya Chan Suk-chong said the public seminar on Saturday will introduce six alternative proposals such as moving the co-location checkpoint to the mainland or conducting immigration clearance at separate locations - suggestions the government has already ruled out.

Chan said the government's co- location proposal will also be explained during the seminar.

University of Hong Kong legal scholars Johannes Chan Man-mun and Eric Cheung Tat-ming, Civic Party lawmaker Jeremy Tam Man-ho and district councillor Roy Tam Hoi-pong will each introduce an alternative proposal.

Concern group member Carpier Leung Kai-chi said while the government has shot down some of their suggestions, the public should be informed nonetheless."When the government raised issues on convenience or operational difficulties, they did not supply enough detailed information for us to rule out these alternatives."

The group has invited Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung and pro-Beijing lawmaker Priscilla Leung Mei-fun to attend, but the two had not yet replied.

Secretary for Transport Frank Chan- fan, on the other hand, declined the invitation, saying he already explained the government's proposal at Legislative Council meetings and public briefing sessions. Tanya Chan said she was disappointed with his response. "The reasons he gave are a bit absurd, especially when he also says he is willing to communicate and listen to different opinions I think this is purely lip service," she said.

The seminar begins at 2pm at a lecture hall inside HKU's Meng Wah Complex in Pok Fu Lam. The venue holds about 290 people and the seminar will be broadcast real-time on Facebook. Those interested in attending may sign up online.

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