Building Democracy

Creating Good Government for Hong Kong

(創建民主: 締造一個優良的香港特區政府)

Edited by Christine Loh and Civic Exchange

ISBN : 978-962-209-667-7

Politics, Government, Public Administration

September 2003

176 pages, 5.5″ x 8.25″

  • HK$95.00

“The ultimate aim is the selection of the Chief Executive by universal suffrage.” Article 45 of the Basic Law

“The ultimate aim is the election of all members of the Legislative Council by universal suffrage.” Article 68 of the Basic Law

The Government has pledged to review Hong Kong’s constitutional arrangements in the years leading up to 2007 and to consult the people. Whatever its findings, the Government review will have great implications for the future of Hong Kong. Building Democracy provides the information and the tools that the people of Hong Kong need to participate actively and effectively in this crucial dialogue.

Building Democracy offers an analysis of Hong Kong’s current political situation within the larger context of its political history and its relationship to Beijing. The 12 chapters explore all the topics that are essential to building a healthy and vigorous democracy, such as: the role of political parties, democratic reform and business, accountability and open government, the media, the basic law, legislative-executive relations, the role of the civil service; development of constitutional conventions; and women in politics. Specific subjects covered include the Principal Officials Accountability System (POAS), Article 23 legislation and the Government response to the 2003 outbreak of Severe Atypical Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). A postscript discusses the July 1st March and the meetings outside the Legislative Council.

“This book meets a crying need. It provides the nuts and bolts necessary for the widespread debate that must precede the process of democratization in Hong Kong.” —Frank CHING

“Democracy is not a gift, it is the people’s choice. No matter how difficult it is, I believe that people of Hong Kong want to have their choice of government. This much needed book could help people better understand the issues related to democracy and then make their choice.” —Allen LEE Peng Fei

“Essential reading for anyone seeking to understand Hong Kong’s struggle to realize the promise of ‘one country, two systems’. Written on the eve of the ‘People Power’ demonstrations of July 2003, Building Democracy is at once a history of Hong Kong’s fitful march towards democracy, and a powerful argument for a faster pace of change.” —John KAMM