Liaison office of central gov't in HKSAR clarifies HK's political system as 'executive-led'


A flag of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. (Photo:IC)

HONG KONG, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) -- The Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) clarified on Monday that Hong Kong's political system is "executive-led," refuting the allegation that Hong Kong exercises the "separation of powers" and expressing support for HKSAR Chief Executive Carrie Lam who recently made the same clarification to the public.

The spokesperson said in a statement that the political system is at the core of the system of the HKSAR, shows the relation between the central authorities and the HKSAR, and stipulates the basic political framework of the HKSAR.

Since the HKSAR Basic Law was drafted in the 1980s, central authorities and mainland experts have repeatedly expounded that Hong Kong's political system is "executive-led," instead of following the "separation of powers," no matter before or after its return to the motherland, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said the HKSAR's political system can be summarized as: three powers divided, executive-led, and independent judiciary, with the chief executive of the HKSAR taking the overall responsibility to the central government.

The Basic Law clearly stipulates the HKSAR's political system and there is no gray zone, the spokesperson said.

When the Basic Law was drafted more than 30 years ago, the central authorities had made it clear that the law drafting would use the reference of Hong Kong's existing, effective system to better safeguard social stability and overall interests of Hong Kong, including the "executive-led" governance adopted during the British colonial rule, the spokesperson said.

Deng Xiaoping also stressed in 1987 that Hong Kong should not copy the western way and the "separation of powers" is not suitable for Hong Kong, the spokesperson said, adding that the spirit of Deng's words has already been reflected in the Basic Law.

The "executive-led" political system with the chief executive at the core is crucial to comprehensively and accurately implementing "one country, two systems," the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said Hong Kong's political system is determined by the constitutional position of the HKSAR.

Hong Kong is a local administrative region with all its powers given by the central authorities, rather than an independent political entity, the spokesperson said.

Under "one country, two systems," the chief executive, at the core of Hong Kong's political system, is the head of both the HKSAR and the HKSAR government, and shoulders dual responsibility to both the central government and the HKSAR, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson said "executive-led" is not opposite to the independent judiciary, and the independent judiciary can also exist under a political system not based on the "separation of powers," citing the British parliamentary supremacy under the constitutional monarchy.

Hong Kong's independent judiciary is well protected as the Basic Law stipulates that courts exercise judicial power independently and free from any interference and Hong Kong has enjoyed a high ranking globally in terms of the rule of law after its return to the motherland, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson stressed that an independent judiciary does not mean "judiciary supremacy" or judiciary overrides the "executive-led" system.

In political science, the "separation of powers" in common applies to a sovereign country, the spokesperson said, adding that it is a non-question in terms of advocating the "separation of powers" in Hong Kong.

The opposition camp has long been attempting to confuse right and wrong, deny the "executive-led" system by advocating the so-called "separation of powers," and mislead the Hong Kong society, so as to undermine the constitutional status and power of the chief executive, said the spokesperson.

Their ultimate goal is to resist and replace the overall governance over Hong Kong by the central authorities, and challenge the constitutional order of the HKSAR, the spokesperson said.

The spokesperson highlighted the necessity of clarifying Hong Kong's political system to safeguard the authority of the Constitution and the Basic Law, maintain Hong Kong's long-term peace and development, and pay due respect to history and common sense.

"One country, two systems" as a groundbreaking cause has to make progress in exploration but there can not be any deviation in its principle and direction, the spokesperson said.

Only when the principle of "one country, two systems" is unswervingly implemented, remains unchanged, and is not bent or distorted in practice, can Hong Kong's long-term prosperity and stability be guaranteed and Hong Kong's future be better, the spokesperson said.