Hong Kong Parliament Without Opposition
On Wednesday, the last pan-democrat lawmaker left the Legislative Council that is now without opposition for the first time since the founding of democratic Hong Kong.
The democratic representative after handing in their mass resignations earlier this month in protest over the disqualification of four colleagues, transformed the formerly lively chamber into a hushed auditorium, where only voices loyal to the ruling Chinese Communist Party are still heard.
Where pro-democracy parties once held the power to veto government bills, only pro-Beijing members remain in LegCo, ready to nod through legislation proposed by Chief Executive Carrie Lam with scant objection - a change Lam has herself already lauded as "the return of peace."
Some members of Hong Kong opposition joked with sadness that now the city has a "Parliament with Chinese characteristics".
Communist China transformed Hong Kong Legislative Council
into a "Parliament with Chinese characteristics"
Mr. Baggio Leung, who was stripped of his LegCo seat alongside five colleagues in 2016 after a decree from Beijing ruling their oaths of allegiance invalid, said the rot started to set in after the 2016 LegCo elections, when elected pro-democracy lawmakers were "disqualified," ending the opposition parties' power of veto over unpopular government policy.
When the CCP in Beijing does a thing once, it is logical to expect it will then continue to do it in future, Mr. Leung told Radio Liberty. The first disqualification was always going to lead to a second, and a third, he concluded.
Authorities place Mr. Joshua Wong under solitary confinement
The leave of the opposition lawmakers was followed by the imprisonment of three top opposition members, formerly student-launched Demosisto party including its leader Joshua Wong.
Mr. Wong was jailed alongside two other young activists on Wednesday for taking part in last year’s huge democracy protests as the crackdown on Beijing’s critics gathers pace.
Wong, 24, was prosecuted alongside fellow activists Agnes Chow, 23, and Ivan Lam, 26, over a rally outside the police headquarters.
The days ahead will be tough but we will hang in there, Mr. Wong shouted as he was led away.
All these pains and sufferings would only strengthen our courage and conviction for democracy and justice, read a post on his verified Twitter account on Monday.
Cages cannot lock up souls, he concluded.
Mr. Wong informed that the Hong Kong prison authorities forced him to stay in the solitary confinement under the pretense of the suspicious sickness. But the independent commentators stated it was another form of persecution of the courageous freedom fighter.