High Tide (June 4th 2015) – Daily Political Round-up

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Civil Aviation head under fire; InnoTech Bureau bill to meet Finance Committee again; New round of meeting between Carrie Lam and pan-dems. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher

Politics (Gov’t & LegCo)

Civil Aviation heads under fire over delayed air traffic management system.
– The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) and the Transport and Housing Bureau have been under fire at a LegCo Public Accounts Committee meeting over a delayed air traffic management system (ATMS) that should have been in use two and a half years ago, together with some other flaws
– Norman Lo, director general of the CAD, was heavily criticised for the blunders while Secretary for Transport and Housing Anthony Cheung was also blamed for failing to perform his responsibility to oversee the operations of CAD
– It was earlier reported (in Chinese) that the ATMS, which was a product of an American company Raytheon, was full of systematic errors while the official who drafted the purchase worked for a subcontractor of Raytheon in Hong Kong after retiring from the CAD

Lawmakers to debate over standard working hours.
– LegCo has approved the establishment of the Innovation and Technology Bureau in the general meeting while People Power’s Albert Chan vowed to filibuster in the Finance Committee
– Lawmakers will continue to debate motion moved by pro-establishment unionist Chan Yuen-han on standard working hours legislation
– Picks for LegCo Questions: 1) Surveillance for MERS; 2) Electricity Tariffs; 3) Online broadcast regulation; 4) Green roof projects

Pan-dems invited to a Friday meeting with Carrie Lam as ‘judgement day’ approaches.
– Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Raymond Tam confirmed (in Chinese) that a fresh round of meeting will be held between pan-dems and Chief Secretary Carrie Lam over political reform on Friday
– Tam said he has already issued invitations to the Democratic Party and the Labour Party and was confirming the exact date and time of the meeting with Civic Party
– Tam also revealed that government officials will arrange a meeting with moderate democrat Leung Ka-lau, their most apparent target, shortly
– Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s tycoon Li Ka-shing urged pan-dems to make to right decision as he argued that blocking the political reform proposal would mean “a loss for all HongKongers”

Hospital Authority ceases exchange activities with South Korea.
– The Hospital Authority announced that it has suspended (in Chinese) all exchange activities with South Korean institutions while lawmakers blasted South Korean authorities for being uncooperative in revealing related information
– Meanwhile, Secretary for Food and Health Ko Wing-man said he will seek advice from the Department of Justice to take legal action against the South Korean man who did not report his sickness while crossing Hong Kong border

Politics (general)

Prologue to what may be a different June 4th in a ‘localist’ era.
– 18 pan-dem lawmakers held (in Chinese) a small June 4th vigil last night at the LegCo protest area
– Albert Ho compared protesters outside the June 4th museum to far-right militarist Japanese
– Ho also said the museum may move its premise owing to difficulties in dealing with the owners’ corporation of the building
– Former June 4th student leader Zhou Fengsuo voiced out his concerns over an increasing ‘localist’ Hong Kong and said he was “hurt and sad” over at some HongKongers’ hostile attitude toward fight for mainland democracy

Journalists protest against the inclusion of Hong Kong into national security law.
– The Hong Kong Journalists Association, the International Federation of Journalists and the Independent Commentators Association submitted a joint letter to Beijing to urged the Chinese authorities to cross out from the national security law bill the part concerning Hong Kong
– In the letter, the associations expressed concerns over a “purge of journalists” if Beijing was allowed to exercise legal power in Hong Kong in the name of national security