High Tide (June 2nd 2015) – Daily Political Round-up

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More than 7000 officers ready for reform protests; Lau junior takes over Kuk chairmanship; Govt steps up MERS scrutiny. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher


Politics (Gov’t & LegCo)

Police mobilised ahead of LegCo debate on political reform proposal.
– More than 7000 police officers with anti-riot equipment will be mobilised to handle foreseeable protests when lawmakers debate on the political reform proposal later this month
– It was told that officers will deploy tear gas, rubber bullet and pepper spray if necessary
– The police has also announced arrangements during this year’s June 4th vigil in Victoria Park and smaller ones held by groups such as the nativist Civic Passion

Uncontested Heung Yee Kuk chairman make sure ‘Uncle Fat”s influence will endure.
– Kenneth Lau, son of former Heung Yee Kuk chairman Lau Wong-fat, has succeeded his father’s authority in the 132-strong rural board after winning an uncontested election with a term of four years
– Lau junior said he will seek advice from his father, who will remain as a board member, but denied accusations that Heung Yee Kok is falling under a hereditary system
– Lam Wai-keung and Cheung Hok-ming will remain as the board’s vice-chairmen
– Secretary for Home Affairs Tsang Tak-sing said, “I anticipate that under the new leadership, the Heung Yee Kuk will continue to unite the rural communities and further the development of the New Territories”

Government to step up surveillance work over MERS.
– Secretary for Food and Health Ko Wing-man said the Government will continue to enhance surveillance work at the border
– Passengers from the Middle East and other affected areas with symptoms referable to MERS are reminded to report to Port Health Personnel while travellers from Seoul with related symptoms will be treated as suspicious cases
– All patients in public hospitals will be required to wear masks starting from today

Lawmakers raise concerns over GFHOPS and public markets.
– The LegCo Panel on Housing discussed (in Chinese) the Green Form Home Ownership Pilot Scheme which will allow public hosing residents to buy new public housing flats in a lower price
– Labour Party’s Fernando Cheung criticised the scheme for being contradictory to the initial purpose of public housing and would not help alleviate the waiting time for a public housing flat
– Meanwhile, a subcommittee on public markets heard (in Chinese) public market store owners over complaints on the business environment and lack of maintenance in public markets

Public consultation on security of payment legislation in construction industry launched.
– The Government has launched a three-month public consultation on proposed security of payment legislation in construction industry
– The legislation is meant to tackle payment disputes between contractors, sub-contractors, consultants and material suppliers

Politics (general)

Ronny Tong: Both Beijing officials and pan-dems are responsible for the fruitless meeting.
– Civic Party’s Ronny Tong criticised pan-dems and the three Beijing officials in the meeting on Sunday, which he was present, for failing to reach an agreement over political reform
– His party compatriot Alan Leong said the top officials on Hong Kong affairs had made it clear that “pocket it first” would mean “pocket it forever”
– ExCo member Cheng Yiu-tong slammed the pan-dems for being like boiled ducks – nothing good but stiff mouthsCX crew members announce decision to shelve August strike.
– The threat of a cabin crew strike in August has been resolved for the moment as leaders of the Cathay Flight Attendants Union signed official agreement with the management over pay and benefits of its members
– It was told that issues such as roster and pattern of cabin crew however would require further negotiations