|Statement by HKSAR Government regarding 2016 Legislative Council election
The nomination period for the 2016 Legislative Council election will commence on July 16. The community expects that the election will as usual be conducted in an orderly manner in accordance with the law, with a view to electing members to represent the public in the Legislative Council to serve Hong Kong. In this regard, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government today (July 14) issues the following statement:
The Legislative Council is constituted in accordance with the Basic Law and relevant local legislation as the legislature of the Region, and exercises its powers and functions under Article 73 of the Basic Law.
According to the provisions of the Legislative Council Ordinance, any person who intends to be nominated as a candidate of the Legislative Council election has to declare in the nomination form that he/she will uphold the Basic law and pledge allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Article 104 of the Basic Law and the Oaths and Declarations Ordinance require members of the Legislative Council to swear to uphold the Basic Law when they assume office. Persons who wish to stand for Legislative Council election should pay particular attention to Article 1, Article 12 and Article 159(4) of the Basic Law. Article 1 states that the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is an inalienable part of the People's Republic of China. Article 12 states that the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall be a local administrative region of the People's Republic of China, which shall enjoy a high degree of autonomy and come directly under the Central People's Government. Article 159(4) states that no amendment to the Basic Law shall contravene the established basic policies of the People's Republic of China regarding Hong Kong.
We take the view that advocating and promoting "independence of Hong Kong" is contrary to the content of the declaration that the law requires a candidate to make, namely, to "uphold the Basic Law and pledge allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region", rendering it questionable as to whether the concerned candidate is capable of being validly nominated, causing uncertainties to the solemn Legislative Council election and confusion to electors. In order that electors will have a clearer grasp of each individual candidate's position as to whether or not he/she upholds the Basic Law and pledges allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, and in order to ensure that the Legislative Council election will be conducted in strict accordance with the law and efficiently, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government agrees that there is a need for the Electoral Affairs Commission to take certain corresponding measures in the electoral process.
For the 2016 Legislative Council election, the Electoral Affairs Commission, the Registration and Electoral Office and Returning Officers will act in strict accordance with the law, including requiring the concerned persons to make a declaration that they will uphold the Basic Law and pledge allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and to submit a confirmation form to assist the Returning Officer to process nominations, to ensure that the Legislative Council election will be held in an open, fair and honest manner in strict accordance with the law.
Ends/Thursday, July 14, 2016
Issued at HKT 17:46