|Fifth report to set out Government's proposal on 2007/08 electoral arrangements
In response to the "Letter to Hong Kong" by the Honourable Lee Wing-tat's broadcast on RTHK Radio 3 today (September 11), a Government spokesman made the following statement:
"After several rounds of public consultation, the Constitutional Development Task Force will publish in the autumn its fifth report to set out Government's proposals on how the methods for electing the Chief Executive and Members of the Legislative Council in 2007 and 2008 should be amended.
"In formulating our proposals, we will take into account views that we have received from the community, including those from different political parties.
"Our aim is to devise a set of proposals which will enable us to move towards the ultimate goal of universal suffrage in a gradual and orderly manner, and which will enhance public participation in the elections of the Chief Executive and the Legislative Council, so that the representativeness of the Chief Executive and the Legislative Council could be broadened."
On the issue of a timetable for attaining universal suffrage, the spokesman emphasised, "There are still divergent views within the community on the pace and form of attaining universal suffrage, and it would not be possible to achieve a consensus on this important matter in the near future. For the moment, it is important for us to deal with the arrangements for 2007/08, so that Hong Kong can continue to make progress in electoral reforms."
In conclusion, the spokesman expressed the hope that different political groups and parties in Hong Kong would be prepared to discuss and to work towards narrowing mutual differences and building consensus, so that we could achieve two-thirds majority support in the Legislative Council, as required by the amendment procedures set out in the Basic Law, to enable the package of electoral reforms to be taken forward.
Ends/Sunday, September 11, 2005