Following is the transcript of the Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Mr Stephen Lam's response to the media after attending a radio programme this morning (April 8):
Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs: Today is the final day for nomination of the by-elections in the five geographical constituencies. The consistent position of the HKSAR Government is that this round of resignations and by-elections is unnecessary. In September 2008, the electors of Hong Kong voted 60 members into the Legislative Council to serve the Hong Kong community for a term of four years. The members concerned could have chosen to stay in the Council to deal with important issues like the constitutional development for 2012 and other economic and social issues.
Nonetheless, according to legislation and according to the Basic Law, the HKSAR Government will organise this round of by-elections on May 16. The Registration and Electoral Office will also inform all 3.3 million voters of the arrangements for the by-elections on May 16. It would be up to individual registered voters to decide for themselves how they wish to respond to this issue.
(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)
Ends/Thursday, April 8, 2010