More than a hundred students at the University of Hong Kong are insisting on three key conditions before they’ll agree to discuss governance with senior management.
The Class Boycott Committee has demanded that the meeting with the chairman of HKU's governing council, Arthur Li, and vice-chancellor Peter Mathieson be held on campus and be broadcast live by the campus media.
They also want two council members - Timothy O'Leary and Eric Cheung - to observe the talks, saying the two are more "neutral".
The students want a reform of the school’s governing structure. In the current set-up, some key positions - including the council chairman - are directly appointed by the chief executive. The students say this has eroded academic freedom.
Yvonne Leung, a member of the committee and former president of the Students’ Union, said it was "totally" the school's choice as to whether to join the dialogue.
However, Leung said Li has already refused to hold the meeting on campus, citing safety reasons.
This was a reference to an incident last Tuesday, when Li and council members were besieged for hours by students demanding a review of the governing body’s structure.
He also opposed the presence of O'Leary and Cheung as observers.
But Leung is still waiting to hear if Li agreed to the live broadcast condition.