High Tide (October 3rd 2015) – Daily political round up

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342 DC nomination forms submitted on Day 1; HKUSU head defends disclosure of Council’s Johannes Chan decision.

Photo: Chris Lusher


Government & LegCo

342 nomination forms submitted on the first day of DC elections nomination period
– The Returning Officers of the 18 districts received a total of 342 nomination forms on the first day of nomination period of the upcoming district council elections
– Tuen Mun district received the most – 36 – nomination forms followed by Kwun Tong district with 34 submissions
– The nomination period will last until October 15

FS to attend IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Peru
– Financial Secretary John Tsang will attend the Annual Meetings of theInternational Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group in Lima, Peru, as a member of the Chinese delegation on October 8
– Before that Tsang will depart for the United States on October 4 to visit New York and Washington DC
– His colleagues, Chief Secretary Carrie Lam and Secretary for Development Paul Chan, will visit Shenzhen on October 5 and Myanmar today respectively
– Meanwhile, six orders for implementing the tax information exchange agreements (TIEAs) with Denmark, the Faroes, Greenland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden was gazetted and will be tabled at the LegCo on October 14 for negative vetting

Political (General)

HKUSU chairman hits back at Council member who accused him of ‘dishonest means’ in causing more controversies on Johannes Chan decision
– Student representative in the HKU Council Billy Fung stressed that his move to disclose the reasons given by some council members to vote down the appointment of pro-democracy scholar Johannes Chan as pro-vice-chancellor was meant to protect HKU students’ right to know and there was no personal motivation
– The HKUSU chairman also said that if he was telling lies, then they would not have constituted a leakage from the perspective of the council members in the first place
– Fung was responding to another council member Lo Chung-mau, who accused Fung of achieving his goals through ‘dishonest means’
– Lo, as revealed by Fung, referred to Johannes Chan not showing sympathy to his (dramatic) fall during a previous Council meeting when angry students rushed into the venue as a reason for turning Chan’s appointment down
– HKU emeritus professor of law Yash Ghai blasted the reasons to reject Chan as “spurious and totally unbecoming” and “a deliberate attempt to vilify [Chan]”
– A group of pro-Beijing protesters gathered at HKU yesterday, chanting slogans such as “HKU students are gangsters” and threatened to beat up the ‘Australian’ vice-chancellor – Peter Mathieson is in fact a British

October 1 visitors up by 15.4% while retail sector records biggest sales slump since January
– Immigration Department figures showed that the number of visitors reached 430,000 on October 1, the starting date of the golden week, up by 15.4% on a year-over-year basis
– 183,000 were from the mainland – a 16.2% rise compared to last year’s figure
– Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Gregory So said the Government would not draw any observation before looking at the whole period
– Meanwhile, the August year-on-year change on sales value saw the biggest slump of 5.4% to HKD37.9bn since January

Musicians to rally against MTR ban on large musical instruments on train
– More than 3,600 people signed up to a Facebook campaign “Let’s bring our musical instruments to take MTR” held today at Tai Po station in protest of MTR Corp’s ban on large musical instruments on train
– Principal cellist for the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Richard Bamping, earlier said that staff from the MTR hotline replied him “Cellists who dare to carry their own instruments are no longer welcome to travel on the MTR and will be asked to leave the station”
– The MTR’s seemingly high-handed, and sometimes double-standard, approach in handling oversize luggage had aroused public discontent, the latest case being MTR staff removing a boy and his grandfather from train at Sha Tin station for carrying martial arts pole

Mother of Lamma ferry victim launches lawsuit against Marine Department
– The mother of a Lamma ferry victim (ch) who worked in Hongkong Electric decided to launch a private lawsuit against the two captains involved in the tragedy, Hongkong Electric, Hong Kong & Kowloon Ferry Holdings Ltd, Islands Ferry Co Ltd, and the Marine Department represented by the Justice Department to demand for compensation
– The move followed an unfruitful talk between the victims’ families and the Department of Justice over disclosure of a report of an internal investigation