sábado, 17 de outubro de 2009

Alargamento do Legco e da Comissão Eleitoral

Expansion of election panel, Legco on table

Gary Cheung
South China Morning Post
October 17, 2009

The government is again considering expanding the Election Committee that will pick the next chief executive in 2012 and making the Legislative Council bigger.

It made similar proposals four years ago for elections in 2007 and last year which Legco vetoed, but constitutional affairs minister Stephen Lam Sui-lung said the administration would not recycle those ideas.

The government will begin a public consultation next month on possible options for electoral reform in 2012. Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen said yesterday he was committed to achieving a "much more democratic" electoral system by then.

Speaking on a Metro Finance radio programme yesterday, Lam said it was crucial the community gained experience in constitutional development in 2012. "The implementation of universal suffrage in 2017 would be smoother if we do a `warm- up' first in 2012," he said.

Lam said the government would strive to inject more democratic elements into the electoral arrangements for 2012.

He said the administration was considering expanding the Election Committee and Legco.

"Increasing the number of Legco seats would provide more room for representatives from various sectors to participate in politics," Lam said.

The chief executive, who was speaking on an RTHK Radio 3 phone-in programme, said the existing method of electing functional constituency legislators did not meet the criteria for universal suffrage.

Tsang said it was up to local people to decide whether functional constituencies should be retained or abolished, but any changes to the electoral system had to secure a two-thirds majority in the legislature. "Half of our lawmakers come from functional constituencies. They need to be persuaded they should go self-destruct for the good of other people," he said.

Tsang insisted he had honoured the pledge he made when re-elected two years ago to resolve the issue of universal suffrage - by securing a timetable for its introduction from the National People's Congress Standing Committee.

In 2005, the government proposed doubling the Election Committee's membership to 1,600. As part of this, all 529 district councillors - including 102 appointed by the government - would have had a seat on the committee. It proposed expanding the number of lawmakers by 10, to 70 - with five directly elected and five chosen by district councillors.

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