Legislative Assembly (AL) President Ho Iat Seng said on Wednesday the legislature’s performance was “still far from satisfactory”.
Addressing the assembly’s Chinese New Year media luncheon at Macau Tower, the city’s top lawmaker said the legislature had encountered some rather big challenges and difficulties, pledging to “meet the challenges” with all of his fellow legislators.
“The continuous flux of changes in society and questions left over from history and various deeply-rooted issues have together contributed to a diversity of interests and demands, as well as volatility and divisions affecting public opinion,” Ho said.
“Although the Legislative Assembly has done its best to meet society’s demands, it’s still difficult to strike a balance among the various demands and expectations of various sectors of society. [The legislature’s] performance is still far from satisfactory.”
He spoke to reporters on the sidelines of the luncheon.
The legislature is slated to complete its current four-year term in October 2017, when all remaining bills will be annulled.
Meanwhile, the speaker declined to say what he will in the election year, adding that he would focus on the current tasks on hand.
He also said Macau’s officials should have better knowledge of the law. “We should ask officials to recite the laws they are obligated to enforce. It would be a negligence of duty if they fail,” Ho said.
Responding to a reporter’s question as to whether the legislature’s standing and follow-up committees should continue to hold their meetings in camera, Ho said lawmakers were able to “speak their minds freely” during closed-door meetings.
He also said lawmakers would possibly be “attacked” online for some of their remarks during committee meetings if they were open to the public.
Ho, a businessman, is the sole Macau member of the elite Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing.