SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)
The Occupy Central movement will tear Hong Hong’s community apart and severely affect the city’s economy and livelihood, Hong Kong’s former chief executive Tung Chee-hwa said today, calling on protesters to end the occupation.
Tung, also vice-chairman of the national committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, made the remarks at a Friday press conference, the Xinhua News Agency reported.
Tung expressed concern over the harm caused by the nearly month- long protests over constitutional development. “The occupation is approaching one month and now it’s time to end it,” he said, adding that he worried the “civil disobedience” movement was “a little bit out of control.”
Tung said he understands the students’ demands for universal suffrage but the idea of civil nomination, which he claimed violates the Basic Law and the decision made by the National People’s Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, could not be carried out.
During the first face-to-face talk held Tuesday with student leaders, government negotiators offered to write a report to the central government detailing protester sentiments and suggested setting up a joint committee to discuss further political reform.
Student leaders decided on Thursday to start a straw poll on Sunday evening to collect citizens’ opinions on whether the government offer should be accepted.
According to Alex Chow Yong-kang, one of the student leaders, the poll will focus on two things: whether the government report to Beijing should be able to change the decision made by NPC Standing Committee on August 31, and whether the joint committee formed should address reform on the elections due in 2016 and 2017.
The poll results will be handed to the government on Monday.
Stanley Ng Chau-pei, president of the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions, a pro-Beijing labor group, and a Hong Kong NPC delegate,told the Global Times that such polls and the Occupy movement are illegal and will not have legal effects.
The protesters are using the poll as an excuse to continue the movement while the Hong Kong people become more rational and more will oppose the movement, Ng said.
“There won’t be constructive results if we continue to stay without making any efforts to figure out a realistic solution,” said Lee Ka-wah, a protester, adding that some of her friends also started to hesitate about whether to continue the protest.
Many anti-Occupy people have criticized them for causing social disorder to Hong Kong, Lee said.
Tung added that he believes that the PLA will not get involved in handling the ongoing protests, since he is confident in the capabilities of police in Hong Kong.