MR CHAN KIN-POR (in Cantonese): President, the motion on “Vote of no confidence in the Chief Executive” proposed by Mr Andrew WAN and the amendment thereto by Ms Claudia MO to cripple the effort of amending the Fugitive Offenders Ordinance (“FOO”) are a “political show” of malicious intentions, a “critique session” that elevates the matter to the political plane, the purpose of which is to provoke and mislead the people in order to serve their own political agenda. Honourable colleagues who have paid attention would find that the last sentence of all of their speeches is an appeal to people to take to the streets on a certain day, which is a highly choreographed act.
The Chief Executive has not committed any misconduct, nor anything unlawful. Why is she being subjected to a public trial in the Legislative Council? Sometimes I think the pro-establishment camp ought to learn from the opposition camp, as they are most awesome actually. For example, during the discussions on the co-location arrangements back then, they almost said that people would be arrested for just walking past the West Kowloon Station, instilling much fear in the public. However, the reality is now the Express Rail Link has been in operation for some time and people only enjoy the benefits it brings, with no one having been arrested.
Similarly, as regards the amendment of FOO, why are they now asserting that certain situations will definitely happen? I was knocked into fears after hearing their speeches just now. It seems like I will be arrested walking on the street tomorrow, and every citizen and visitor will be vulnerable to such treatment―everyone will be arrested. They have presented such situations as facts. I doubt if they should do so.
FOO has definitely caused concerns in society. But society should give the Government a chance to explain it, especially the details. People holding dissenting views can try to convince their opponents with arguments. It is what an assembly should do. To my understanding, the Bills Committee originally set aside approximately 70 hours for officials and Members to scrutinize the Bill in a question-and-answer format. It on the one hand could dispel public misgivings and force the Government to make changes to the amendments, and it could leave on the other an official record, which is in keeping with the fine tradition of the Council. If the opposition camp were really sincere in working for the good of Hong Kong, they should allow the Bills Committee to conduct its scrutiny of the Bill and only turn against it if they were still dissatisfied after the scrutiny. It is what the Council should do.
Regrettably, the opposition camp simply does not subscribe to reasons, and has prevented the discussion on the Bill in society from the beginning. They have employed all kinds of trickery, including delaying the election of the chairman, holding bogus meetings, ignoring the House Committee’s decisions, storming the conduct of meetings, etc., disabling the Bills Committee and eventually forcing the Bill to be presented before the Legislative Council direct for the Second Reading debate. Such a situation is the doing of the opposition camp singlehandedly while the Government has been in a passive position. The opposition camp has resorted to its usual tactics and, conversely, put the blame of the present chaos on the Government, even slandering the Government and smearing the Chief Executive. People need only pay careful attention to find out that everything is the doing of the opposition camp.
Irrational, the opposition has been using scare tactics to raise alarmist talk, and has even teamed up with foreigners to instill hear in Hongkongers. But they have spread a lot of wrong information, misleading people all along. They have elevated the issue to the political plane. Despite the Government’s categorical assertion that political offenders will not be extradited or be extradited on other offences and that the Court will act as the gatekeeper so that ordinary people will absolutely not be implicated for no reason, the opposition camp has outrageously smeared the Court. They claim to safeguard the rule of law, but keep attacking the rule of law. Particularly, for judgments that they are not happy with, they will immediately criticize the Court. Sometimes, I consider their comments extreme exaggerations and they are unrivalled in the whole world for “moving the goalposts”. Now, they have described the situation as one where even good law-abiding citizens will be arrested. It is absolutely preposterous. In fact, if FOO is not amended, Hong Kong will formally become a haven for fugitives in name and in essence.
President, the more truth is debated, the clearer it gets. At least we should listen to the Government’s explanation. The Panel on Security will hold meetings and 14 hours have been set aside for officials and Members to discuss the details of the Bill in a question-and-answer format. If the opposition camp think they have grounds, they should convince the Government and the Council with reasons, instead of resorting to charging and storming to prevent the conduct of meetings. I am very worried that the meetings of the Panel on Security will likewise be stormed. I hope the opposition camp will not fulfil our prediction that they will definitely stir up troubles. I hope Honourable colleagues will raise questions to the Government on matters about which people are truly concerned, so that they can genuinely help them understand the law.
President, the Legislative Council is a venue where laws are made and improvements of people’s livelihood discussed, not a platform on which time is wasted on smearing the Chief Executive and the Hong Kong Government, thereby inciting people to take to the streets. For this reason, I absolutely oppose such a motion on “Vote of no confidence in the Chief Executive. I so submit.