Hong Kong lawmakers and government are working better

Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen, chairman of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, receives journalists for an interview on June 10. [ZOU HONG/CHINA DAILY]

New Legislative Council members reach effective deal on bills

Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen, chairman of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, said he believed the new LegCo would have good interaction and cooperation with the new SAR government to resolve deep-rooted issues and benefit to the people of Hong Kong.

“The LegCo needs to cooperate with the government while overseeing their work, so there is a delicate balance. We want to work with the new government to elevate the current good relationship between the executive and the legislature to a higher level,” a- he declared.

Under the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong”, new LegCo members can express different views and effectively conduct in-depth discussions on different bills, he said in an interview ahead of the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return. Hong Kong to the motherland, which falls on July 1.

Lueng said there was nothing unusual about ensuring “patriots rule Hong Kong”, which is universal around the world. “There is no place in the world where people who hold public office are not patriots,” he said.

Legislative Council seventh term legislators took an oath of allegiance to the HKSAR and its Basic Law in front of the national emblem on January 3. The 90 members are the first batch of Hong Kong lawmakers elected under the revamped electoral system.

“The members are all patriots and are competent professional legislators representing different sectors,” Lueng said. “Many experienced people are willing to serve Hong Kongers and can discuss specific issues and express different opinions without getting personal.”

Leung, who also served as LegCo’s six-term chairman, said that during Leg-Co’s fifth and sixth terms, opposition LegCo members colluded with foreign forces to undermine the principle of “one countries, two systems”. They tried to use “two systems” to resist “one country” and prove that “one country, two systems” would not work, he said.

Therefore, the central government took decisive action and introduced the National Security Law for Hong Kong and improved the electoral system.

LegCo has returned to normal and passed many good laws for the economy and people’s livelihoods since last year, Leung said.

“The change has been obvious,” he said. “The LegCo actually passed a record 46 government bills last year, more than double the average of previous legislative years. Now we can act like a normal legislature, discuss the bills and decide on adopt them or not.”

It is not an automatic approval parliament because not all bills are passed and they have all been thoroughly discussed, he added.

The new LegCo has also limited the number of people on committees so that different committee members can have in-depth discussions on social issues, such as housing and youth mobility, he said.

“The practice of ‘one country, two systems’ over the past 25 years has been successful, despite ups and downs,” Leung said. “It is an unprecedented, great and historic concept, and one that is conducive to Hong Kong and the country, so we must adhere to the principle and ensure that it is implemented well.”

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