HIGH TIDE (MARCH 16TH 2015) – DAILY POLITICAL ROUND-UP

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Gate closed to protesters at open day; Anti- anti-parallel trading protest; Carrie Lam: I have a dream. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher.


 

Politics (government &LegCo)
Carrie Lam rules out referendum on political reform.
– Chief Secretary Carrie Lam poured cold water on HKUPOP Director Robert Chung’s suggestion of a reform referendum, saying that “there is no constitutional basis for such a referendum. There is also no legal status”
– According to the latest poll conducted by the CUHK’s Centre for Communication and Public Opinion Survey, the public was increasingly divided as 47% opposed the political reform while 40% supported it
– Meanwhile, when speaking at a spring party organised by the DAB’s Eastern and Wanchai branches, Lam said she dreamed (video in Cantonese) the approval of the political reform in LegCo

A long week ahead in LegCo.
– This week’s LegCo will kick off with seven meetings in total today, including a special meeting of the Financial Committee to delegate power to the Financial Secretary to include relevant provisions in the Estimates of Expenditure 2015-2016
– More filibustering expected – stay tuned with us on the full Week Ahead today!

Diplomat

Hong Kong celebrates its first St Patrick’s Day parade.
– The Harbour was painted green as people joint the first ever St Patrick’s Day parade in Hong Kong, marching from Observation Wheel to Tamar Park in Admiralty
– Meanwhile, Harbour Times presents an interview with Ireland’s first ever Consul-General in the city Mr Peter Ryan

Politics (general)

Gate closed to protesters at Government House Open Day.
– About 15,000 people visited the Government House at Open Day, among which 21 were escorted away with 2 arrested for obstructing police
– People’s Power Erica Yuen was ordered to leave for “causing disarray” while her compatriot Tam Takchi joint the others who were asked to turn away for carrying yellow umbrellas or items with the slogan “I want true universal suffrage”
– The CE was out shaking hands with visitors for a brief while but did not answer any questions from journalists

Protest against anti-parallel trading ‘rioters’.
– A group of 100 pro-establishment and pro-Beijing demonstrators marched from Charter Garden to the Government Complex to voice their support toward CY Leung and to condemn violent actions during recent anti-parallel trading protests
– It became slightly chaotic when the group came face-to-face with members of People’s Power who were leaving the Government House

China & World

No need for Hong Kong policy tightening, says Premier Li.
– Premier Li Keqiang said yesterday at the NPC meeting’s closing press conference that there is no need to worry whether the Central Government will tighten its control over Hong Kong affairs
– Li stated that “the Basic Law stipulates that the systems of the special administrative region, and one-country, two systems policy represent the will of the country and the desire of the people”
– Meanwhile, Deputy Director of the Hong Kong & Macao Affairs Office Zhou Bo said the authorities are reviewing the multiple-entry visa policy and are considering imposing a cap on it