Embattled Hong Kong leader to adhere to ‘one country, two systems’ in policy address

Jeck Deocampo   •   October 17, 2019   •   150

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam addresses a press conference after presenting her 2019 policy address in Hong Kong, China, 16 October 2019. EPA-EFE/MIGUEL CANDELA

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said moves to threaten the ‘one country, two systems’ framework will not be tolerated in a televised policy address on Wednesday (October 16) as she battled to restore confidence in her administration and address widespread discontent after over four months of anti-government protests.

Lam had earlier been forced to abort her annual policy address after some pro-democracy lawmakers jeered as she began speaking, causing an unprecedented cancellation of the speech in the Legislative Council of the Chinese-ruled city.

The Beijing-backed leader later gave her speech over a video feed, saying her government would drastically increase the number of housing projects and accelerate the sale of public housing schemes.

She was speaking hours after the U.S. House of Representatives passed three pieces of legislation related to the Hong Kong protests, drawing a swift rebuke from Beijing, which accused the lawmakers of “sinister intentions” to undermine stability in the Asian financial hub. (REUTERS)

(Production: Juarawee Kittisilpa)

DFA: Filipinos in Hong Kong are safe, no need for evacuation at this time

Marje Pelayo   •   November 18, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) assures kin of overseas Filipino workers (OFW) in Hong Kong that they are safe and remain unaffected by the ongoing public unrest in the southeastern Chinese territory.

The DFA issued a statement following false reports on the plight of Filipino workers and residents in Hong Kong that circulated on social media.

“The Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong is closely monitoring the situation and is taking every step to ensure the continued safety and well-being of our nationals there,” the DFA said.

The Department said those who wish to follow the impact of developments in Hong Kong on Filipinos there, are advised to visit the Consulate’s website for updates and advisories “instead of turning to questionable sources of information in the social media.”

In a live broadcast on Facebook, Consul General Raly Tejada allayed fears of families of OFWs living and working in the territory.

“Ang inyong mga mahal sa buhay dito sa Hong Kong ay safe naman po at nasa Mabuti pong kalagayan, (Your loved ones here in Hong Kong are safe),” Tejada said.

“Wala po kayong dapat ipagalala sapagkat ang Konsulado naman po dito ay nananatiling handa upang tumulong sa mga pangangailangan ng mga kababayan natin dito, (You have nothing to worry about because the Consulate is ready to provide them the necessary assistance),” he added.

Meanwhile, Tejada calls on all Filipino residents and workers in Hong Kong to always monitor the Consulate’s advisory through its official Facebook page and website where Philippine officials announce latest information regarding the ongoing protests in Hong Kong.

They may also call the Philippine Consulate’s hotline number 91554023 for assistance as they are ready to respond, according to Tejada.

Filipinos who have work contracts in Hong Kong are assured that the territory’s international airport is functional and businesses runs as usual.

However, Consul General Tejada asked non-essential travelers to Hong Kong to defer their plans at this time for their safety.

“Kung pwede po ay ipagpaliban muna at pagisipan po muna natin bago po tayo tumuloy ng Hong Kong (You may opt to defer or reconsider before you travel to Hong Kong),” he said.

“Ang mga public transportation po dito ay naapektuhan po ng rally kaya hindi po dependable sa ngayon (All public transportation here are very much affected by the rally so they are not that dependable at this time),” he concluded.

Tunghayan ang mensahe ng ating Consul General Raly L. Tejada

Posted by Philippine Consulate General in Hong Kong on Monday, 11 November 2019

Hong Kong legislature suspended amid chaos over protests

Robie de Guzman   •   October 17, 2019

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam addresses a press conference after presenting her 2019 policy address in Hong Kong, China, 16 October 2019. EPA-EFE/MIGUEL CANDELA

Pro-democracy lawmakers in Hong Kong heckled the city’s embattled leader and called for her to step down on Thursday (October 17) during a legislative session that was repeatedly suspended as several politicians were manhandled out of the chamber.

It was the second day of chaos in Hong Kong’s Legislative Council as leader Carrie Lam tried to answer questions about her annual policy address, which she was forced to deliver by video link on Wednesday (October 16) after similar disruptions in the assembly.

Lam, who is backed by China’s government, announced measures on Wednesday to tackle the city’s chronic housing shortage in her address after she was jeered in the chamber. Again, on Thursday, pro-democracy lawmakers shouted for Lam to resign, saying she had blood on her hands.

They also called on her to address protesters’ key demands – something her policy address largely ignored.

About a dozen members of the assembly were ejected, shouting and waving placards as security guards marched them out. (Reuters)

(Production: Xihao Jiang, Juarawee Kittisilpa)

Hong Kong leader, no plans to use emergency powers for other laws

Robie de Guzman   •   October 8, 2019

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam speaks during a press conference announcing a ban on face masks in public, in Hong Kong, China, 04 October 2019. EPA-EFE/FAZRY ISMAIL

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday (October 8) her administration had no plans to use emergency powers for the introduction of other laws and that the Chinese territory was equipped to handle the current situation on its own as the city braced for further demonstrations through the week.

Lam was speaking at a news conference after a long weekend of violent protests at which thousands of people defied colonial-era emergency powers imposed on Saturday (October 5) that had banned the wearing of face masks.

Lam on Friday (October 4) invoked the emergency powers for the first time in more than 50 years in a dramatic move intended to quell the escalating violence in the Chinese-ruled city.

The ban on face masks took effect Saturday, Oct. 5, under the emergency laws that allow authorities to “make any regulations whatsoever” in the public interest, Lam said. (Reuters)

(Production: Joyce Zhou)

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