The Hong Kong government has ordered recently-disqualified lawmaker Leung Kwok-hung to remove all of his political banners from the New Territories East constituency where he served.
If he does not complete the task by Monday, the Lands Department will order him to pay removal costs.
The Lands Offices of Tai Po district, North district and Sai Kung district each sent Leung’s office letters on Wednesday, listing a total of 96 banners that his team will have to remove. His right to display these particular banners was subject to his status as a legislator.
Leung issued an appeal on Facebook on Friday night, asking members of the public to help remove the banners over the weekend. He encouraged people to take them to his party’s Cheung Sha Wan headquarters for recycling.
“The New Territories East constituency is very large. Many of the banners are located in rural areas, and we really don’t have time to remove them all,” he said.
“We asked the Lands Offices if they could delay [the deadline], but they insisted that they would not change it.”
“The Lands Department is disgraceful!” wrote one commenter. “I don’t see them giving a time limit for DAB lawmakers who have stepped down to remove their banners… They only target ‘Long Hair’, this is political persecution.”
In their letters, the three offices did not specify the exact costs for removal. A spokesperson for Leung told HKFP that he would have to pay HK$300 for each remaining banner.
He added that the Lands Department only replied on Friday rejecting Leung’s request to delay the deadline for removal.
The other three recently-disqualified pro-democracy lawmakers – Edward Yiu, Lau Siu-lai and Nathan Law – have not issued similar appeals to the public so far.
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Last Friday, the High Court ruled retroactively that they ceased to become legislators last October because of the controversial ways in which they took their oaths of office. A total of six elected opposition lawmakers have been disqualified since Beijing issued an interpretation of the Basic Law last November to clarify how oaths should have been taken.
HKFP has contacted the Lands Department for comment.