In its debut performance, the NatSec regime’s ‘Candidate Eligibility Review Committee’ bars Cheng Chung-tai of the localist/maverick group Civic Passion from running for the Election Committee. The vetting body doesn’t give any specific reasons for rejecting the would-be candidate, but they have a ‘negative list of behaviours’ and can bar someone for ‘things they have said and written in the past’. While they’re at it, the CERC also eject Cheng from the Legislative Council, where he was one of just two remaining/surviving non-establishment members.
Cheng says he ‘respects the decision’. It’s hard to see who’s trolling whom.
The nativist’s account confirms that the CERC inquisition imposes a CCP-style religious test. It’s hard to see why the unjailed remnants of the Democratic Party might still be tempted to run – or try to run – for election, though I bet a few will.
To repeat: Beijing officials and their local underlings might blather about ensuring that only patriots are admitted to ‘governance’ of Hong Kong. But this whole electoral ‘improvement’ thing is about completely excluding public opinion from any actual political decision-making – leaving the Legislative Council and other supposedly representative bodies no more than a ceremonial role. The exclusion of dissenters is purely symbolic, just as the ‘insider’ status loyalist/shoe-shiner candidates will enjoy (Gay Games mouth-frothing notwithstanding).
Yet officials still want people to vote in the coming pointless elections, and Carrie Lam is suggesting that it will be the political parties that are pointless if they don’t participate – even though her puppet administration has put most of their leading members in jail. A distinct lack of enthusiasm for elections, compared with the 71.2% turnout in the 2019 district polls, will be one of few ways for citizens to register their views.
The UK has received 64,900 BNO applications in the first five months of the settlement option.
Some other reading…
How many have you forgotten? A spreadsheet of 300 horrors that have taken place since… March 2021.
An investigative piece on for-profit operations at the public-subsidized South China Athletic Association.
George Magnus on Xi Jinping’s attack on private-sector companies.
More from Jamestown on Beijing’s exploitation of Western social and digital media.
A good summary of what might come next in the Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou extradition case.