Change LegCo meeting rules to beat abuse: Pauline Ng
in Hong Kong, it is 50 percent — 35 of 70 lawmakers — making meetings more likely to adjourn after a quorum call.
There have been calls in society to amend the quorum rule that the bell should be rung only at the start of a meeting and during voting to make it in line with international standards. Such amendments require the approval of lawmakers from both the geographical and functional constituencies at the plenary meeting.
In the past, it was difficult to pass such an amendment because the “pan-democrats” returned by geographical elections had slightly outnumbered their rivals. But now with four direc tly-elec ted “pan-democrats” disqualified because of their failure to take oaths as required, amending the rules seems possible.
Amendments to the Rules of Procedure are ongoing, but t h e “p a n - d e m o c r a t s ” h av e kept opposing them. Therefore, amendments should be made by a near consensus in the legislature to ensure the new arrangement is mutually acceptable, instead of one camp pressing for amendments simply with an adequate number of votes, Ng said.
Former secretary-general of Legislative Council Secretariat Pauline Ng Man-wah says loopholes in the LegCo Rules of Procedure should be addressed to curb future filibustering.