NPC Passes Lifting Of Presidential Term Limits

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2018-03-11 HKT 16:05

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  • NPC passes lifting of presidential term limits

The National People's Congress on Sunday abolished the term limit for China's president in a widely-expected move that will effectively let President Xi Jinping rule as long as he wishes. Two thousand nine hundred-and-fifty-eight delegates voted in favour, two objected, three abstained, and one vote was invalid.

The scrapping of the two-term restriction applied to both the president and the vice president.

The changes also gave the Communist Party more say in ruling the country and engraved President Xi's political mantra into the constitution, as well as paving the way for a new powerful anti-corruption agency called the National Supervision Commission.

In his work report, National People's Congress Standing Committee Chairman, Zhang Dejiang, said the amendments will "provide a firm constitutional guarantee for upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era".

As he reviewed the legislature's work, he spoke about Beijing's interpretation of Basic Law Article 104 over oath-taking. He said the move was to stop independence advocacy in Hong Kong and to defend the authority of the constitution and the Basic Law.

The NPCSC head also highlighted the endorsement of a plan to put mainland immigration facilities in Hong Kong's future high speed rail terminus at West Kowloon. He said the arrangements, which will enable mainland laws to be applied in parts of the station, comply with the constitution and the Basic Law.

And he said the top legislature had set out the course for a "gradual development" of democracy in Hong Kong by deciding on how the SAR's Chief Executive should be elected through one-man, one-vote.

He said the NPC Standing Committee had exercised its power from the constitution and the Basic Law.