B1 Intermediate UK 3973 Folder Collection
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Hong Kong is an international city.
It is a dynamic city.
A financial hub with a diversified culture.
But do you know?
What is it that Hong Kong is presently fighting for at this very moment?
Let’s begin with a brief account flash back of Hong Kong’s history.
For over 100 years, Hong Kong has been a British colony.
Under British ruling, Hong Kong thrived as the strategic geographical location – being the "door to China".
In the 1980s, China and the United Kingdom signed a Joint Declaration
which sets out how Hong Kong is to be governed after the handover in 1997.
On the first of July, 1997, Hong Kong was handed over to China.
The Basic Law came into effect.
It is the mini constitution which confirms of Hong Kong as China’s Special Administrative Region.
Under the Basic Law, Hong Kongers were assured a high degree of autonomy, preservation of its capitalist system for 50 years.
Hong Kong people are entitled to choose its own leader.
What happened since?
Since 1997, the first, second and third Chief Executive of Hong Kong were elected by an election committee.
The present Chief Executive, C Y Leung, was elected by 1,200 election committee members.
Only a small portion of these members were democratically elected.
With a population of over 7 million, Hong Kong is being ruled by C Y Leung, elected with only a vote of 689.
What are the consequences if our leader is elected by ‘small circle’ interest?
Ever since the handover, Hong Kong’s policies and political landscape were largely controlled by special interest groups,
from the mainland or from powerful businessman.
Inequality became worse – the rich becomes richer, and the poor becomes poorer.
Property prices rose to a level where many cannot afford to buy their home,
but the businessmen prospered and resist all kinds of changes.
Under the Basic Law, Hong Kong people are promised the right to have universal suffrage – the rights to choose its own leader.
But what exactly is the rights to universal suffrage?
Rights to nominate, rights to be nominated, and rights to vote.
All of them are essential, and not one can be missing.
The international standard is that people are born to have equal political rights.
What China is trying to do at the moment, to limit the people’s right of nomination.
They want to be able to nominate whoever they like, and screen out whoever they do not like.
The Chinese government wants a controlled election with a predictable outcome.
If people do not have the right to nominate, it is not true universal suffrage.
Picking out a rotten apple and a rotten orange,
and letting you choose which one is to be eaten, such cannot be true choice.
If Hong Kong’s leader is handpicked by the Chinese government,
chances are he or she will not genuinely care about what Hong Kong people need.
Imbalance and inequality will continue.
Hong Kong will gradually become more and more like the Mainland.
Will it be that the Chinese-picked Chief Executive uses his or her mandate
to impose brainwashing national education on all primary school students?
Will the Chief Executive make speech which undermines judicial independence?
Will press freedom further deteriorate, and be completely wiped out one day?
Can people continue to be able to say bad things about the government without fearing any revenge?
Will the Chinese-style corruption become part of Hong Kong’s day to day life?
We do not know, but it is very likely to follow if Hong Kong people lose this final chance to choose its own future by picking its own leader.
What is being done now?
Civil nomination is widely seen in the pro-democracy camp as the protection of the right of nomination
All it involves is that a citizen will be able to stand for election after collecting a certain number of nominations from fellow citizens.
The threshold is negotiable.
Some people see this as the only way which Hong Kong people can be guaranteed with true universal suffrage.
From 22 to 29 June 2014, Hong Kong people participated in an informal ‘referendum’,
organized by the Occupy Central with Love and Peace Campaign.
More than 700,000 Hong Kong people eligible to have casted their vote to support civil nomination.
The bottom line is this: if there is no civil nomination in the proposed methods of electing the Chief Executive,
many ordinary citizens will commence a series of civil disobedience activities.
These may include occupying the main streets in the heart of Hong Kong’s financial hub, Central,
blocking the transport and bringing the day-to-day running of Hong Kong’s financial system to a halt.
The aim is to raise international awareness and put pressure on the Chinese government
to come to the negotiation table, and give Hong Kong people what they have been promised, that is, true universal suffrage
It ought to be highlighted that the core principle of the Occupy Central movement is a non-violent civil disobedience.
If the police are to come and arrest the participants, they have vowed not to resist with any violence or with the intention to hurt others.
Isn’t there any alternative?
No. The government won’t listen to the people’s voices.
On the proposal submitted to the Chinese government in respect of the political reform,
the Hong Kong government did not represent civil nomination as a mainstream option.
On 1 July 2014, more than 500,000 Hong Kongers took it to the street to demonstrate against the Hong Kong government.
The demonstration was followed by a peaceful overnight sit-ins at the main financial zone in the heart of the city.
Some of them were arrested.
Some experienced other consequences.
But The 500,000 odd people was simply neglected.
The 700,000 odd vote in the informal referendum was likewise neglected and regarded as legally ineffective.
How can you take part in helping Hong Kong?
We need your concern and awareness on what is going on in Hong Kong.
We need your understanding and sympathy on the civil disobedience activities which may happen in Hong Kong,
that they are not acts of violence, but purely acts of fighting against an unfair system,
that if we really have a choice, no one wants to take it to the street.
We need you to spread the words for us.
It is the last chance of Hong Kong to remain the way it is.
It is the last chance for its people to fight for what they have been promised.
It is the last chance for the peace-loving people in Hong Kong to be guaranteed
equal political rights and the right to choose its own leader and way of living.
We hope you will support us when the time comes,
by telling others our story, by voicing out your support on various forums, and to pray for us.
Thank you.
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3973 Folder Collection
Andrew published on September 29, 2014    Jacky Avocado Tao translated    James reviewed
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