An honorary chairman of the Liberal Party, James Tien, says the party will ask chairman Tommy Cheung to resign from the Executive Council over the extradition bill controversy.
Tien added other executive councillors who supported the government’s bill after June 9 – the first of two mass rallies when more than a million people took to the streets to oppose it – should also resign as the Chief Executive's advisers.
Tien said he and three other honorary chairpersons of the pro-government, pro-business party would write to Cheung on Monday and ask him to quit his Exco post.
Tien noted that a statement issued by Cheung in support of the government after the June 9 rally was too rushed.
That statement – which was backed by three out of four of the party's lawmakers – might have encouraged protesters to surround Legco three days later on June 12, Tien said.
“I think all those who supported the government to charge ahead after June 9 should resign. I don’t know who exactly these are, but at least publicly, you can see the honourable Ronny Tong and honourable Regina Ip seem to be very keen to urge the government to continue to go ahead,” he said.
“I think the executive councillors’ main role is to give the government the right advice, not bad advice, so if you keep giving the government bad advice in this incident, I think those councillors who gave that bad advice to go ahead should resign,” Tien told RTHK’s Janice Wong.
Party leader Felix Chung – the only party lawmaker who opposed Cheung's 9 June statement – supports the call for Cheung to resign as an Exco member.
Chung said such a move can send a message to society and other political parties that the government needs to “change its governance and attitude” instead of just talking the talk.
Chung said if similar protests had happened overseas, they would have led to a cabinet reshuffle.