Yau Wai-ching

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Yau Wai-ching
游蕙禎
Yau Wai-ching.jpg
Member of the Legislative Council
In office
1 October 2016 – 12 October 2016
Preceded byNew seat
Succeeded byVincent Cheng
ConstituencyKowloon West
Personal details
Born (1991-05-06) 6 May 1991 (age 28)
Kowloon City, British Hong Kong
Political partyYoungspiration (2015–19)
ResidenceMong Kok, Kowloon[1]
Alma materLingnan University
OccupationPolitician
Yau Wai-ching
Traditional Chinese游蕙禎

Regine Yau Wai-ching (Chinese: 游蕙禎; born 6 May 1991) is a Hong Kong politician. She is a member of the localist group Youngspiration that advocates in favour of Hong Kong independence. She was elected to the Legislative Council of Hong Kong as a member for Kowloon West in the 2016 Legislative Council election, but has since been disqualified pursuant to a judgement delivered by the High Court on 15 November 2016.

Background[edit]

Yau was born on 6 May 1991 at St Teresa's Hospital in Kowloon City, Hong Kong to a middle-class family. Both her parents are civil servants.[2] Her father was a technical officer in the Hong Kong government. She was educated at Queen Elizabeth School and studied Chinese language at Lingnan University.[3] She was an intern at Ta Kung Pao newspaper during her study.

She is a member of Youngspiration, a localist group formed by young people after the Umbrella Revolution. Youngspiration fielded nine candidates in the 2015 District Council elections, in which Yau ran against legislator Priscilla Leung in Whampoa East. As a newcomer, Yau received 2,041 votes, only about 300 votes less than Leung.[2][4] After the district council election Yau served as Kwong's assistant and Youngspiration's Whampoa community officer.

Legislative Councillor and disqualification[edit]

Representing Youngspiration in the 2016 Legislative Council election, she won the sixth and final seat in the Kowloon West geographical constituency. With 20,643 votes, Yau Wai Ching edged out incumbent Wong Yuk-man to become the youngest female member of the Legislative Council, and its second-youngest ever member, behind fellow-localist Nathan Law, who won in the same election, on Hong Kong Island.

On 12 October 2016 in the first meeting of the session, Yau and her party colleague Baggio Leung inserted their own words into the official script and had their oaths rejected. They were criticised for pronouncing China as "Jee-na", a term considered derogatory since the Second Sino-Japanese War, and Yau mispronounced "People's Republic of China" as "people's re-fucking of Jee-na".[5] As a result, their qualification as legislators were challenged by the government in court.[6] The National People's Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC) intervened in the court case by interpreting Article 104 of the Basic Law of Hong Kong to "clarify" the provision of the legislators to swear allegiance to Hong Kong as part of China when they take office, by insisting oath taking be conducted sincerely and accurately, and later stating that China would firmly oppose Hong Kong independence. On 15 November 2016, the court disqualified the two legislators[7] on the grounds they did not take their oaths "faithfully and truthfully".

On 26 August 2017, the Court of Final Appeal of Hong Kong refused to appeal the case as they did not have a reasonably arguable case.[8] Leung and Yau were found to have manifestly refused and wilfully omitted to take their oath – an act classed as declining and neglecting it.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Electoral Affairs Commission (Electoral Procedure) (Legislative Council) Regulation (Cap. 541 sub. leg. D) (Section 21)--Notice of Valid Nominations—Legislative Council General Election Kowloon West Geographical Constituency" (PDF). Government Logistics Department. 5 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Yau Wai-ching: I might be stripped of my post any day". 19 October 2016.
  3. ^ "中環出更:「新政」靚女 空降黃埔東鬥梁美芬". Oriental Daily. 30 March 2015.
  4. ^ "男選民「背妻投游蕙禎」 鼠王芬稱對她人身攻擊". Metro Daily (in Chinese). 27 November 2015.
  5. ^ "Three rejections and multiple deviations mark Hong Kong Legislative Council swearing-in". South China Morning Post. 12 October 2016.
  6. ^ "Hong Kong government fails to block localist duo from retaking Legco oaths, but wins right to seek judicial review". South China Morning Post. 18 October 2016.
  7. ^ "Hong Kong court rules localist lawmakers must vacate Legco seats". South China Morning Post. 15 November 2016.
  8. ^ "Ousted Hong Kong lawmakers Baggio Leung and Yau Wai-ching lose final bid to regain seats". South China Morning Post. 25 August 2017.
  9. ^ "Why did Hong Kong's top court strike down final appeal bid over oath-taking saga?". South China Morning Post. 2 September 2017.
Legislative Council of Hong Kong
New seat Member of Legislative Council
Representative for Kowloon West
2016
Succeeded by
Vincent Cheng