China / HK Macao Taiwan

Decision on reform 'stays despite veto'

By Xinhua in Hong Kong (China Daily) Updated: 2015-06-19 07:48

Decision on reform 'stays despite veto'

An electronic display shows the results of a vote of a government-backed reform package during a session in the main chamber of the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, June 18, 2015. [Photo/IC]

China's top legislature said on Thursday its decision on Hong Kong's electoral reforms, announced in August, would remain in force despite being vetoed by city lawmakers.

After a nine-hour debate, which began on Wednesday, 28 lawmakers voted against the motion, while eight voted in favor. Many lawmakers left the chamber before the vote.

To pass, the motion needed to be endorsed by at least two-thirds of all 70 lawmakers, or 47 votes, under a decision reached by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress.

A statement from the committee's office said, "Although the universal suffrage motion was not passed by the Legislative Council, the direction toward universal suffrage and the legal principles laid down in the decision of the National People's Congress Standing Committee must continue to be upheld in future efforts to pursue universal suffrage.

"The decision will continue to serve as the constitutional ground for Hong Kong in the future, as it enforces universal suffrage in the chief executive election, and its legal force is unquestionable."

The Standing Committee also accused the opposition camp of serving personal interests at the expense of Hong Kong's prosperity and stability.

The Liaison Office of the Central Government in Hong Kong said in a statement, "We are disappointed by the veto, as are the majority of Hong Kong people."

The Liaison Office said the universal suffrage package, "upholding democracy, openness, fairness and justice, is an electoral arrangement that perfectly suits Hong Kong's actual conditions".

Mainstream public opinion in Hong Kong was for the motion to pass, for a historic step forward to be made in the city's democratic journey, the statement added.

However, a small number of legislators vetoed the motion against most residents' will, costing Hong Kong a valuable chance to realize "one person, one vote," the office said, adding that "those who vetoed (the motion) have to bear historical accountability."

Previous Page 1 2 Next Page

Hot Topics