More than 3,000 joining rally against Arthur Li’s appointment as Chairman of HKU Council

PTU News Reporter

The Government announced on New Year’s Eve 2015 that Professor Arthur Li Kwok-cheung was appointed as the Chairman of the Council of the University of Hong Kong (HKU), which has now triggered off discontent of the community. 19 different organizations including teaching staff and students of HKU, HKU Alumni Concern Group and HKU Academic Staff Association organized a rally on 3 January to protest against Li’s appointment. Moreover, the organizations also urged the concerned authority to review the ordinance so that the Chief Executive will not become default Chancellor of the statutory institutes. It was reported that more than 3,000 joining the rally on that day.

Many protesters held the slogans against Arthur Li’s appointment as Chairman of HKU Council. Spokesman of different organizations criticized CY Leung for appointing Arthur Li as chairman who had not been supported by staff, students and alumni of HKU and he seemed to provoke more antagonism and deepen the divide in the community intentionally. Fung Wai-wah, HKPTU President, pointed out that Arthur Li showed no respect for institutional autonomy and academic freedom and the community would not want to see Li to ruin the institutions. Fung also thought that Li would only put the sector of tertiary education under surveillance and do nothing for the long-term well-being of HKU. Fung revealed again that results of the survey conducted in October of last year demonstrated that 74% of the members of the sector of tertiary education were against Li’s appointment as chairman of HKU  council, and 61% of them expressed that Li was “Very unsuitable” choice for this post.

Ip Kin-yuen, as a representative of HKU Alumni Concern Group, said that it was not proper for Chief Executive to appoint unwelcomed Arthur Li which blatantly disregarded public opinion. Ip also found it worrying when CY would continue to appoint his allies to the councils of the other statutory institutes.