May 26, 2005

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Who's running Hong Kong?

The creaky machinery of what passes for democracy in the Big Lychee saw The Don officially resign so he can begin his campaign for Chief Executive (CE). Why he's bothering to waste money on a campaign office in Central is beyond me, especially as Beijing is doing its damnedest to lock it all up. Appearances are everything, I suppose.

But it leaves a bigger question. Since Tung Che-hwa resigned, The Don has been acting CE in his role as chief secretary. Now he's quit. So who's running Hong Kong for the next 6 weeks while we wait for The Don to officially be "elected"? Secretary for Housing Michael Suen will be acting chief secretary. The same person in charge of the REIT debacle. I predict the next 6 weeks will see a new competition from the various policy secretaries: a scramble to enjoy the limelight until The Don assumes his throne.

The Standard also nicely summarises the various political futures now at stake. The Don is Beijing's choice and there are plenty of politicians with different agendas. The challenge is how he will manage this sea of jealousy and ambition. And most of all how he will respond to whatever challenges fate has in store.

In the interim, why not get the Link REIT IPO back up and running, Mr Acting Chief Secretary?

posted by Simon on 05.26.05 at 02:19 PM in the Hong Kong democracy/politics category.


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