Sunday, January 17

Hong Kong: Carrie Lam promises to restore “order” in annual speech

Ms Lam presented her plans for the semi-autonomous territory during her annual policy speech which had been postponed for more than a month.

The leader had been ordered to go to mainland China to meet with central government officials.

Restoring Hong Kong’s constitutional order and political system is one of the most urgent priorities“after the chaos,” Ms Lam told the Legislative Council (LegCo).

The territory, supposed to enjoy a very large autonomy until 2047 under the principle “One country, two systems“, last year experienced several months of monster and often violent demonstrations.

Calm has returned to the streets of Hong Kong due to coronavirus control measures, which limit gatherings, and following Beijing’s passage of a draconian national security law in June.

Hong Kong has suffered an unprecedented number of beatings“, she acknowledged, citing social unrest, the contraction of the economy, the coronavirus pandemic as well as acts which”threatened national security“.

For the first time, almost no opposition MPs sat in the local parliament.

Two weeks ago, 15 pro-democracy deputies resigned to protest the ouster of four of their colleagues, in the wake of a resolution passed by the Chinese parliament, which makes it possible to dismiss any legislator considered to be a threat to the national security.

Now only pro-Beijing loyalist MPs sit in the local parliament which was unusually quiet on Wednesday.

During the demonstrations of last year, the chief executive appointed by Beijing refused to deliver her speech to the LegCo.

She had broadcast a pre-recorded video after being heckled by pro-democracy deputies who called for her resignation.

This year, the speech took place without the usual invectives of the elected representatives of the opposition.

Lam said her government will introduce bills aimed at “improve oath taking“officials and”improve the electoral system“, without giving details.

The leader also intends to strengthen “patriotic education“to strengthen the sense of national identity among young people.


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