SYNOPSIS:

LECTURE 2: LegCo’s rules of debate: Design purpose and design failure

About the lectures: Bad governance hurts lives. Poor legislation undermines social stability and the rule of law. The Legislative Council has a central role to play in both under Hong Kong’s constitution. These are not just matters for political scientists and lawyers. They are burning issues for every intelligent man and woman. Yet, despite the media’s apparently insatiable appetite for colourful events and characters within LegCo’s precincts, there is an obvious lack of systematic understanding and informed debate on how LegCo in fact performs its functions, particularly in passing legislation as part of good governance, how far it falls short of competence, and what price Hong Kong and indeed the world outside Hong Kong is paying for it. This series of public lectures attempts to make a start to plug the gap, and is intended for all concerned members of the public, including legal and constitutional academics, practitioners and students. No previous knowledge of law is necessary.

About the speaker: Margaret Ng is a graduate of the University of Hong Kong and Cambridge University, and a Doctor of Philosophy of Boston University. She is a barrister in private practice, and served as a member of the Legislative Council returned by the Legal Functional Constituency from 1995 to 2012, during which period she participated in more than 200 bills committees, serving as chairman in some 60 of them. She was also the vice-chairman of LegCo’s Committee on Rules of Procedure from 1988 to 2012.