Lam defines govt's powers - and takes on responsibilities

Updated: 2017-03-31 09:48

By Dominic Lam and Fong Yun-wah(HK Edition)

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Dominic Lam and Fong Yun-wah write it is important for the CE-elect to select members of her cabinet who are not only experienced and able but also politically intelligent and conciliatory with good judgment

Lam defines govt's powers - and takes on responsibilities

Our new Chief Executive-elect Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor has designated the establishment of peace and harmony among different factions in Hong Kong as her top priority. Toward this end, she has made an important start by clarifying the relationship between the central government and Hong Kong in the context of "One Country, Two Systems". Lam quoted Zhang Xiaoming, director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, on the subject when she addressed the media after their meeting. "Zhang said he was aware and supportive of her pledge that her cabinet would not rely on the Liaison Office's help to lobby politicians and would leave it to her to run her own administration and take the lead in bridging the city's political divide," a report read. This is obviously a very significant step toward unifying Hong Kong's people and the various political parties, especially since many politicians and media have used the alleged interference of the central government in Hong Kong affairs as an excuse for protests, demonstrations, etc, and possibly also for their political gain over the past few years.

With such a gracious agreement from the Liaison Office, it is the responsibility of our new CE-elect to select the most capable people to be members of her administration, and for her to be a strong leader who may have to make tough and unpopular decisions because "the puck will stop in front of her".

In this regard, it is of paramount importance for Lam to select senior members of her administration who are not only experienced and able administrators but are also politically intelligent and conciliatory with good judgment, ie people with a superior intelligence quotient and emotional quotient. It would also be advisable for her to appoint some members with diverse political perspectives, such as "pan-democrats", to her inner circle and/or cabinet and to have them participate actively in the unification and consolidation process. Making the correct appointments will therefore be among her most important and immediate tasks, and will go a long way toward solving other pending problems and issues in Hong Kong, such as housing, education, social care, taxation, and technological and cultural innovation. In the end, political stability and social unity in this city will only be attained if Hong Kong people, especially the less privileged, have better living standards.

Moreover, peace and harmony in Hong Kong will not only benefit this city and its people but also be beneficial to the nation and its leadership. For instance, over the past few years President Xi Jinping has traveled to many countries around the world to advocate the "China Dream" of world peace and harmony. It was unfortunate that some of the international media have used the unrest in this city as an excuse, saying harmony starts at home and China should first calm conflicts within its own territories. In this regard, Hong Kong, being a well-known international city, has often been used as an example. We hope Lam and her team will eliminate or minimize such confrontations in this city.

All things considered, Hong Kong's incoming Chief Executive has made a great start. We hope all Hong Kong people will sincerely rally behind her with support and understanding. Together, we will move toward a brighter tomorrow for all of us.

(HK Edition 03/31/2017 page1)