採訪/陳漢 編輯/田淨 後製/蕭宇
Macau: 20,000 People Protest Proposed Government Immunity Laws
20,000 Macau residents recently hit the streets in protest.
They are standing against government actions
enacting laws to protect the welfare of senior officials.
They are also protesting the criminal immunity
of the Chief Executive’s term of office.
They are calling for the SAR Administration to withdraw the
security system for the Chief Executive and principal officials.
It is said to be Macau’s largest demonstrations
after the 1989 pro-democracy movement.
Some people think the government’s approach does not
make sense, and the reasoning behind it is not simple.
On the afternoon of May 25, twenty thousand people
in Macau went to the Macau Legislative Assembly.
They were dressed in white, holding banners,
as well as pictures of Macau Chief Executive
Fernando Chui Sai On, and other senior officials.
The protestors were calling for
Chui Sai On to withdraw draconian laws.
They also protested against the self-enrichment,
and public corruption of senior officials.
Macau police said the parade opposing proposed
laws reached as maximum as 7,000 people.
Civil group ‘Macau Conscience’ reported that
the number of participants reached 20,000.
This is reported to be Macau’s largest demonstration
after the 1989 pro-democracy movement.
It was reported that the Macau government
submitted a draft proposal to the council security
system of the designate, incumbent and outgoing
Chief Executive, as well as principal officials.
It was proposed that the legislation set up a welfare system
for the Chief Executive and the nine principal officials.
This included that the Chief Executive may obtain subsidies
equal to 70% of a monthly salary, after leaving their position.
Taking Chief Executive Chui Sai On as an example, who
served as the social and cultural secretary for 10 years.
After leaving office, he will receive
compensation for more than 7 million yuan.
He’s also the outgoing Chief Executive, so can receive
a long-term monthly ‘pension’ of about 189,000 yuan.
Moreover, the outgoing Chief Executive,
principal officials and their families reserve
the right to care, drugs, medical and surgical
treatments in the highest level of hospitals.
Macau citizens believe that this
is the ‘self-enrichment’ of officials.
Mainland democrat Chen Shuqing believes that
Macau people have the right to protest this behavior.
Chen Shuqing, Mainland democrat: “Officials
themselves do not create any social wealth: it is
the national taxes of the people that feed them.
The salary should therefore be agreed by the people.
Of course, the Parliament will
vote on the consent procedures.
If they use their power to establish a rule that they
can earn more money, people have the right to protest."
In addition to safeguarding working conditions and
treatment, the fourth provision of the proposed laws
also provides judicial protection for the Chief Executive.
The provision stipulates that in addition to safety
from being removed from office by impeachment,
in accordance with ‘Basic Law’, ‘the Chief Executive
does not apply criminal proceedings during his tenure’.
The Chief Executive may also enjoy
immunity from prosecution during his term.
‘Hong Kong Falun Gong Concern Group’ founder
Xiong Li believes that the reason behind the Macau
government proposing such laws is not straight-forward.
Xiong Li: “There might be certain political reasons behind it.
I think it might be the Chinese Communist
Party (CCP) has undertaken some influence.
They worry that the political situation
is not under control, and some officials
in Macau are involved in corruption.
If this is investigated, it may affect the
stability of the CCP’s control over Macau.
This might well be the reason that they did this."
According to a report by web news site ‘All About Macau’
at 22:30 on May 25, three executive, legislative members of
the two organizations held an emergency press conference.
This was as they faced 20,000 people protesting.
They jointly handed a letter to the Chairman of the
Council, requiring a plenary meeting to resolve the
proposed subsidies laws for outgoing senior officials.
They asked for this to be handed in to a
committee for reconsideration during a
period appointed by all plenary sessions.
The news report suggests that the initiator
of the parade, Su Jiahao, a member of ‘Macau
Conscience’, believes that this is just a delay tactic.
The public do not accept it.
He pointed out that the proposed law is like the
consideration of a black box by another black box.
The Council is just an overseeing body ‘in name only’.
Su Jiahao further comments that ‘Macau Conscience’
insists on the withdrawing of the proposed law.
Xiong Li: “This seems to be a new trend. They want
to ensure some senior officials do not step down.
If these officials violate the law, then you
should step down according to the law.
If a law is implemented to ensure that he does
not step down, and maintains his vested interests
and rights, then I think this is a bad practice."
The Macau legislative committee will
vote on the proposed law on May 27.
Su Jiahao announced a plan if the Macau government
still does not withdraw the proposed law before the
legislative council convenes the meeting on May 27.
They will undertake surrounding the
Legislative Council on May 27 from 2:30 pm.
Interview/Chen Han Edit/Tian Jing Post-Production/Xiao Yu