Lawmakers-elect who fail to attend the playing of the national anthem before they swear their oaths of office will be at risk of disqualification if they don't have a good excuse, a member of the executive council says.
Horace Cheung, also a DAB lawmaker, was speaking after the government published its National Anthem Bill yesterday. The bill sets out official occasions at which "March of the Volunteers" must be played.
"It depends on the intention of the lawmaker," Cheung said. A lawmaker who fell ill would be fine, but if a lawmaker said the skipped the anthem out of disrespect, then "the judge would consider this factor when he makes a decision".
However legal sector lawmaker Dennis Kwok, of the Civic Party, said playing the anthem before oath-taking never came up in the government's consultations on the proposed law – never mind disqualification.
Six pro-democracy lawmakers-elect were expelled from Legco in 2017 after a court ruled that they failed to take their oaths properly.