Footage has resurfaced of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying neglecting the phrase “Hong Kong” during his 2012 oath-taking for the position of Chief Executive in 2012.

During his swearing-in ceremony, Leung said: “… be held accountable to the Central People’s Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Special Administrative Region,” leaving out the two words in the last part of his oath.

YouTube video

Earlier this month, pro-Beijing lawmaker Wong Ting-kwong retook his oath at the legislature after also omitting the phrase “Hong Kong.” Andrew Leung, president of the legislature, said his original oath was invalid.

Wong Ting-kwong
Wong Ting-kwong.

The video of Leung came into the spotlight after reports suggested on Tuesday that Beijing may issue an interpretation of Hong Kong’s mini-constitution over the matter of oath-taking. Article 104 of the Basic Law stipulates that lawmakers “must, in accordance with law, swear to uphold the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China and swear allegiance to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.”

Pro-Beijing newspaper Ta Kung Pao said that Beijing may interpret the law to allow oaths to be taken once only. Such an interpretation would disqualify five lawmakers from their offices, including the localist duo Yau Wai-ching and Baggio Leung Chung-hang as well as pro-Beijing lawmaker Wong Ting-kwong. It is unknown if the Chief Executive, who is approaching the end of his term, would be affected in such a case.

See also: Legal challenge against localist duo was not ordered by Beijing, says Sec. for Justice

CY oath taking 2012

Leung Chun-ying delivered his oath in Mandarin as then-Chinese president Hu Jintao presided over the ceremony. He did not have to take his oath again.

Also in 2012, Raymond Wong Yuk-man coughed throughout his swearing-in ceremony in order to obscure words such as “Republic” and “Special Administrative Region” in an act of protest.

YouTube video

His oath was accepted by the Legislative Council Secretariat.

Chantal Yuen is a Hong Kong journalist interested in issues dealing with religion and immigration. She majored in German and minored in Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University.