The following for the summary of speech made by Margaret Ng regarding the motions concerning the Amendment to the Method for the Selection of the Chief Executive and Legislative Council in 2012.
Resolution on the method of selecting the Chief Executive in 2012
Speech of the Hon Margaret Ng
What has to come, has to come. The result of the vote is not in question. Tonight, we are here to explain the reasons for our decision. Democracy is not about the art of compromise, of closing a deal and then selling it to the people as the best bargain. It is not about counting votes or manipulating public opinion surveys. Democracy is the endeavour to reach consensus through open, rational and informed debate, by giving each other an opportunity to test our positions through argument. This is not such an occasion, we are merely striving at doing the second best, and that is to give reasons for how we have decided to vote and be accountable to the public we represent. Honesty and integrity is the minimum requirements of public office. Otherwise we rule by naked power or plain deception, and sooner or later this will lead to an eruption of anger among the people, and we face turmoil and violence.
The stability of Hong Kong is very much on my mind as we debate the Government’s proposals for political reform.
Mr. President, I oppose the Government’s proposals for three reasons. First, they fail completely to address the constitutional and social purposes of reform. They should be aimed at moving towards the elimination of unfairness in Hong Kong’s political system, in order to give people the right to universal suffrage under the Basic Law and to ensure good governance for Hong Kong as a whole. It is not to protect the vested interest of some members of this Council and the sectors they represent, or to woo extra votes by creating seats to give the followers of any of the parties greater job opportunities as LegCo members.
Secondly, the method which the Government has adopted to push through these proposals has been dishonest and in utter contempt of the people. The consultation exercise was a sham. Minimum resources are used to give ordinary citizens a real understanding of what these proposals are. Views received are merely put into a compendium and committed to oblivion. Then the Government mounted a propaganda campaign which did nothing except disgracing the Chief Executive personally and the Government as a whole, while the final deal is closed behind closed doors, and ostensibly between the Democratic Party and the representatives of the Central Authorities. No one who is not already in the know is allowed time to digest these developments. By his action or lack of action, the Chief Executive has made clear that he no longer represents people of Hong Kong, and “one country, two systems” is no longer a sustainable illusion.
Thirdly, I oppose these proposals on grounds of conscience and principle. I have stood for election in the legal functional constituency in order that we may give our vote to the abolition of functional constituencies the continued existence of which is contrary to Article 25 of the ICCPR and the Basic Law, and a blatant unfairness in our political system. I have been returned on that pledge, and I stand by it. It is not only my personal conviction or the conviction of Civic party. Personally and as a party, I and my colleagues have, in the past months, gone to the community to explain and listen and consult people in all walks of life. We firmly believe that the development of democracy is not to be achieved as a gift begged on our knees from those who hold absolute power. We must earn democracy by personal participation and by taking responsibility for our choice. Our sincere action in the referendum movement has been the target of personal insults from this Government acting as the puppets of the power and influence behind it. But no one can take away the truth that innumerable citizens of Hong Kong have come to realize: that we must have a roadmap to genuine universal suffrage which abolish all functional constituencies. We are given the mandate of that cause. We are not about to abandon the people who have shown so much faith and courage.
And there is an equally important message in our opposition. The Government has been doing its best to equate being rational and moderate with supporting these proposals, and equate opposition with violence and unreason. The essence of democracy is that one can oppose resolutely and rationally without violence. And that is what we uphold and stand for. We do not condone violence, but we must warn the Government that it will provoke violence by pursuing divisive policies which make a section of the community feel permanently aliented.