In response to an open letter by members of Scholarism who are taking part in a hunger strike, a spokesman for the Chief Executive's Office today (December 3) replied as follows:
The Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung, has repeatedly stated that he is determined and will do his utmost to achieve selection of the Chief Executive by universal suffrage in 2017. He and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government are willing to communicate and conduct dialogues on constitutional reform in an appropriate manner with different sectors of the community.
However, any discussion relating to constitutional reform must be guided by the regulations set out in the Basic Law and the Interpretation and Decisions of the National People's Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC). We must follow the law in order to achieve genuine universal suffrage. Expressing views on constitutional reform through illegal and confrontational means is bound to be futile. We hope the students who are undergoing hunger strike could take good care of their health.
The first two steps of the "Five-step" constitutional process on the method for selecting the Chief Executive in 2017 have been completed. The next step is for the HKSAR Government to submit the proposal on constitutional reform to the Legislative Council (LegCo) with a view to securing a majority approval of the LegCo. Therefore, the concept of "withdrawal" does not exist in the constitutional process. In accordance with the decisions of the NPCSC, if the proposal failed to be approved by the LegCo, the method for selecting the Chief Executive in 2012 will continue to be used for selecting the Chief Executive in 2017. Legally, "re-launching the constitutional reform" does not exist either.
As such, the request by some Scholarism members to conduct dialogue with the Government on re-launching the constitutional reform will not and could not be acceded to by the Government for it is impractical and has contravened the legal procedures.
The Government hopes that all sectors of the community could adhere to the Basic Law and the Decisions of the NPCSC to achieve universal suffrage in 2017, so that 5 million eligible voters could for the first time select the Chief Executive by "one person, one vote".
Ends/Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Issued at HKT 19:58