Tommy Cheung Yu-yan has announced that he will not run for the chair of the House Committee of the Legislative Council after failing to garner enough support from within its pro-Beijing political camp.

The Liberal Party lawmaker said at a press conference on Wednesday that he has received mixed responses from lawmakers within his camp, with some saying they will not support him.

“I do not want to win by a margin of few votes, but also to get extensive cross-party support to be the chair of the house committee,” he said. “I have discussed with colleagues, and this target could not be reached.”

Tommy Cheung Yu-yan at a press conference.

He added that the seven-party alliance needed to show unity after failing to pass the government’s political reform package in June. He denied, however, that his run has undermined unity within its ranks. 

The House Committee is an important body within LegCo that prepares for meetings and considers matters relating to the business of the council. One important function of the House Committee is to scrutinise new bills, as well as subsidiary legislation tabled at meetings or presented to LegCo for approval.

Last week, Tommy Cheung announced his bid to run for the chairmanship of the committee during the new LegCo term, going head to head with the incumbent chairman, Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen of the pro-Beijing Business and Professionals Alliance for Hong Kong.

Ip Kwok-him, a DAB party lawmaker who is responsible for coordinating which positions members of the the pro-Beijing alliance run for, said that he was very happy that Cheung could see the big picture and supported Andrew Leung.

Cheung said the China Liaison Office was not involved in his decision to pull out of the race.

Kris Cheng

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.