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Liaison Office sides with gov’t in opposition to democracy referendum

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image Li Gang (center), the director of the Central People’s Government Liaison Office in Macau

The Central Government Liaison Office in Macau has released a statement expressing its opposition to the civil referendum on the Chief Executive that was proposed this week by three pro-democracy groups. The referendum is seen as a way to protest against the CE election.
In a statement released late on Tuesday night, the Liaison Office claimed that any referendum has no legal basis in Macau. “An administrative region has no authority to establish a system of referendum or organize any activity relating to referendum,” the statement declared.
Also on Tuesday, the chief-of-cabinet of the CE office and government spokesperson, Alexis Tam, said that a civil referendum on the Chief Executive election is “illegal” and “invalid.”
The office also adopted the expression of the MSAR government, calling the referendum “illegal and invalid.” It added that “the Liaison Office totally agrees with and supports the stance and attitude of the MSAR government, to administrate the relevant issue according to the law.”
The statement concluded by suggesting that all parties in Macau should strive to maintain the stability and prosperity of Macau’s society. “Any action that is against the Basic Law and the system will not win people’s hearts,” it claimed
The statement came after an official response from the MSAR government through government spokesperson Alexis Tam. Mr. Tam insisted that the referendum lacks a “constitutional legal basis” and is “illegal” and “invalid.”
Nevertheless, he said that the government would not take action at this moment, saying only that the “relevant department will follow up on the referendum later.”

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