Margaret Ng: Democrats must have realistic goals to run in 'patriotic' elections

Participating to guarantee political survival does not make sense, rather the aim should be to strengthen the democratic conscience of society. The reform wanted by the authorities cancels the chances of victory for the democratic front. Lee Cheuk-yan: Beijing "will reap what it sowed"; history will prove its "guilt".

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) - The problem is not whether or not to participate in the elections on December 19, or whether to dissolve or keep a party of democratic inspiration, but to have goals and understand if they can be achieved in a realistic way.

This is reflection by Margaret Ng on the opportunity of pro-democracy parties to compete in the next vote appeared yesterday in the pages of the Apple Daily. The "patriotic" electoral reform wanted by Beijing cancels the chances of victory of the democratic camp, favouring the pro-establishment forces.

A former parliamentarian and Christian jurist, Ng was sentenced on April 16 to 12 months in prison for organizing and taking part in an unauthorized assembly on August 18, 2019. Her sentence has been suspended. She is not worried that any participation in the vote may appear as a tacit recognition of the decisions taken by the city authorities and the central government.

According to Ng, competing to guarantee political survival makes no sense: "In the absence of a democratic political system, the biggest goal of the establishment of a democratic party should be to strengthen democratic consciousness in society, to garner democratic forces, and allow like-minded people to have an inspiring place to gather and inspire each other.”

The democratic exponent points out that the democratic movement has suffered blows and attacks; many of its members feel lost and need to be heartened. Many people are in prison and need support. The judicial system is on the verge of being "massacred" by the authoritarian regime, a situation that requires vigilance and action to protect it.

In a moment of severe depression for the democratic front, there is no lack of calls for resistance. In his first letter from prison, after being sentenced in the same trial involving Ng, former MP Lee Cheuk-yan writes that China and those who help the Chinese Communist Party deprive the people of Hong Kong of their freedoms "will reap what they sowed”.

Lee faces a one-year sentence. His letter is dated April 22, and was published on May 8 on his Facebook page. He strongly argues that history will prove the "guilt" of the Beijing authorities and its allies in Hong Kong.