High Tide (May 12th 2015) – Daily Political Round-up

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CY Leung stresses ICAC independence; Schools blasts misleading Guangxi Fed; New idea for rail link checkpoint. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher


 

Politics (Gov’t & LegCo)

Public Accounts Committee hears case on cooked food market vacancy.
– The LegCo’s Public Accounts Committee held a public hearing on a report by the Audit Commission over high vacancy rates in 11 Cooked Food Hawker Bazaars (CFHB) managed by the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department
– Secretary for Food and Health Ko Wing-man the situation is reasonable as the Government do not issue new hawker licence since 1972
– Ko stressed that CFHBs are only temporary measures to accommodate existing licensed hawkers and plans will be proposed to redevelop the CFHB areas

Government steps up to tackle unlicensed guesthouses.
– It was reported that the Office of Licensing Authority (OLA) of the Home Affairs Department (HAD) has conducted a number of enforcement actions to tackle unlicensed guesthouses during Labour Day Golden Week
– Chief Office of OLA Au Wing-hung said they have carried out 4520 inspections and instituted 36 prosecutions to licensed guesthouses since 2015
– Between 2009 and the end of April 2015, a total of 571 persons were convicted of operating unlicensed guesthouses with 43 sentenced to imprisonment

CY Leung: Cases of prominent figures convicted for corruption reaffirm the independence of ICAC.
– CY Leung delivered a speech at the opening ceremony of the 6th ICAC Symposium, in which he praised the ICAC’s three-pronged strategy – enforcement, prevention and education
– Leung said there were a few cases with prominent members of the community convicted for corruption and related offences, reflecting and reaffirming “the independence of our judiciary and the robustness of the ICAC’s anti-corruption efforts”
– Meanwhile, ICAC commissioner Simon Peh refused to comment on probe over Secretary for Development Paul Chan, which was dropped earlier without explanation

Politics (general)

Latest reform poll result stand at 42.5:39.5.
– A joint -university rolling survey conducted by the Centre for Communication and Public Opinion Survey (CCPOS) of CUHK, the Public Opinion Programme (POP) of HKU, and the Centre for Social Policy Studies (CSPS) of PolyU released its latest results, with those supporting the political reform dropped by 2.3% to 42.5%
– 39.5% said they are opposed to the reform, making the difference between the two camp narrowed down to 3%

Videos displaying students supporting political reform uploaded without consent.
– Schools blasted (in Chinese) the Federation of HK Guangxi Community Organisations for giving out misleading information to seven students who were recorded when speaking from a script supporting the political reform during interviews
– The students told their schools and parents that the Federation staff promised not to make the videos public
– The Federation claimed that they had obtained consent from the students to upload the videos
– The Office of Privacy Commissioner of Personal Data said they would not make any comment concerning the case at the moment

Political figures divided on solution to express rail link checkpoint.
– A legal advisor to Beijing who required anonymity said having mainland immigration officers to work in Hong Kong high-speed rail link terminal as a solution to the checkpoint issue would not contravene the Basic Law
– New People’s Party’s Michael Tien earlier suggested amending an annex of the Basic Law to allow mainland staff to work in the terminal
– Civic Party’s Dennis Kwok slammed (in Chinese) the idea as it is made clear under the Basic Law that mainland officers are not allowed to enforce laws in Hong Kong