Senior subsidy plan might be delayed
Despite the fact that the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB) will probably support the government’s senior subsidy plan, pan-democrats and the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions have joined hands to keep the plan from going forward. In today’s Welfare Committee meeting and tomorrow’s Finance Committee meeting, they plan to support a motion to adjourn discussion of the subsidy. If the two groups bring their 33 votes together, the motion might have a chance of passing as long as they can bring a few more legislators over to their cause.
Bokhary warns of “storm clouds” over rule of law
Yesterday, retiring Court of Final Appeal judge Kemal Bokhary said that storm clouds were gathering over Hong Kong’s independent legal system due to the failure of some people to appreciate the concept of One Country, Two Systems. However, he said that the legal community would still strive to protect the rule of law in Hong Kong. Bokhary also emphasized that he did not agree with former Secretary of Justice Elsie Leung’s criticism of Hong Kong’s courts. Nevertheless, he does not believe that her opinions will negatively impact the rule of law in the SAR. He also said that while he acknowledges the right of the Court of Final Appeal to seek legal reinterpretations, it would be wrong for the court to seek reinterpretations when it felt it did not have to do so.
Artificial beach plan is already set
The government is resolute in its decision to build an artificial beach at Tai Po, despite the fact that six environmental groups went to the Office of the Ombudsman yesterday to lodge a complaint. According to Sing Tao’s sources, government insiders believe that halting a project that has already passed the consultation and legislative funding allocation processes would set a bad precedent. However, as a consolation, the government could build an environmental education center and conserve some sand. A decision will be announced today at the earliest, but environmentalists and academics are already calling the government’s reasoning absurd.