The Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs, Mr Stephen Lam, attended a Metro Radio programme this morning (April 15). Following is the transcript of his remarks to the media afterwards:
The constitutional development package proposed yesterday for 2012 contains genuine democratic progress. We have proposed, for example, that the number of seats for the Legislative Council (LegCo) should be increased from 60 to 70. The 10 new seats are all democratically based: five will come from direct elections in geographical constituencies; five will come from elected District Councillors electing amongst themselves by proportional representation. Therefore, political parties in Hong Kong should seize the moment and make new democratic progress for Hong Kong, and thereby creating more favourable conditions for implementing universal suffrage for the Chief Executive (CE) in 2017 and for the LegCo in 2020. Mr Qiao (Xiaoyang), the Deputy Secretary-General of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, made a statement in Beijing yesterday affirming that the universal suffrage timetable has legal status and is beyond any doubt. He also stated that the door to universal suffrage for Hong Kong has already been thrown open. Hong Kong only needs to arrive at a consensus on the electoral model for universal suffrage for the CE in 2017 and for the LegCo in 2020, and complete the "five constitutional steps", for turning universal suffrage for Hong Kong into a reality. Therefore, political parties and individual members in the LegCo should allow Hong Kong to move forward in 2012 and approve the constitutional development package proposed yesterday so as to create even better conditions for implementing universal suffrage in 2017 and 2020.
(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)
Ends/Thursday, April 15, 2010