LC Paper No. LS275/98-99
Paper for the House Committee Meeting
of the Legislative Council
on 24 September 1999
Legal Service Division Further Report on
Adaptation of Laws (No. 17) Bill 1999
Members may recall that the Legal Service Division made a report to the House Committee on 2 July 1999 on the Bill (LegCo Paper No. LS 216/98-99 refers). To recap, the Bill adapts certain Ordinances relating to the registration of certain professions to bring them into conformity with the Basic Law and with the status of Hong Kong as a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. Annexes A and B of the report are attached for Members' ease of reference.
2. At the House Committee meeting, we informed Members that we were seeking clarification from the Administration regarding the proposed adaptation of the Hong Kong Red Cross Ordinance (Cap. 1129) to reflect the change of affiliation of the Hong Kong Red Cross ("HKRC") from the British Red Cross Society to the Red Cross Society of China ("RCSC"), which took effect on 1 July 1997.
3. The Administration has given its reply to our queries and the gist of the reply is as follows:
- The change of affiliation would not lead to any change in the duties, powers, rights, obligations or liabilities of HKRC under Cap. 1129 or its Constitution, except for changes which arise strictly from the change of affiliation itself. For example, matters of internal management of HKRC are no longer settled or carried out in accordance with the Royal Charter, which incorporates the British Red Cross Society, as provided in Cap. 1129.
- Section 2A of Cap. 1129 stipulates that HKRC shall act in accordance with the Fundamental Principles and Statutes of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The Announcement of RCSC ("the Announcement") was made to implement the Fundamental Principle of "Unity" which defines that each country should only have one national Red Cross. Hence, HKRC becomes a branch of RCSC when the sovereignty of Hong Kong was returned to China and HKRC has been operating in accordance with the Announcement since 1 July 1997.
- Section 2A(1) of the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance (Cap. 1) provides that all laws previously in force shall be construed with such modifications, adaptations, limitations and exceptions as may be necessary so as not to contravene the Basic Law and to bring them into conformity with the status of Hong Kong as a Special Administrative Region of China. Since HKRC's change of affiliation is necessary as a result of Hong Kong's change of sovereignty, by virtue of section 2A(1) of Cap. 1, Cap. 1129 has been construed and complied with by HKRC since 1 July 1997 as if the Ordinance has been adapted. Hence, it is legally in order for HKRC to operate in accordance with the Announcement since 1 July 1997 notwithstanding that the Announcement will be incorporated into Cap. 1129 only upon enactment of this Bill.
4. The Administration has also confirmed that all bodies and organisations concerned in the Bill have been consulted on the proposed amendments. Those bodies and organisations support the proposals.
5. With the above clarifications by the Administration, we are satisfied that the legal and drafting aspects of the Bill are in order. Subject to Members' views, the Bill is ready for resumption of Second Reading debate.
FUNG Sau-kuen, Connie
Assistant Legal Adviser
Legislative Council Secretariat
20 September 1999
List of Ordinances affected by the Adaptation of Laws (No. 17) Bill 1999
|Item No.||Ordinances and subsidiary legislation
|1.||Dentists Registration Ordinance (Cap. 156) Dentists (Registration and Disciplinary Procedure) Regulations (Cap. 156 sub. leg.)
|2.||Medical Registration Ordinance (Cap. 161) Medical Practitioners (Registration and Disciplinary Procedure) Regulation (Cap. 161 sub. leg.)
|3.|| Midwives Registration Ordinance (Cap. 162) and Midwives Registration (Amendment) Ordinance 1997 (61 of 1997)
|4. || Nurses Registration Ordinance (Cap. 164) and Nurses Registration (Amendment) Ordinance (82 of 1997)
|5. || Hospitals, Nursing Homes and Maternity Homes Registration Ordinance (Cap. 165)
|6. || Child Care Services Ordinance (Cap. 243)
|7. || Supplementary Medical Professions Ordinance (Cap. 359)
|8. || Chiropractors Registration Ordinance (Cap. 428)
|9. || Social Workers Registration Ordinance (Cap. 505)
|10. || Hong Kong Red Cross Ordinance (Cap. 1129)
Adaptation of Laws (No. 17) Bill 1999
Summary of the proposed amendments
Definition of "Charter" in the Hong Kong Red Cross Ordinance (Cap. 1129).7
1 This reference which appears in the Dentists Registration Ordinance (Cap. 156) supplementary Medical Professions Ordinance (Cap. 359), relates to forfeiture to the Crown of dental materials and equipment in the possession of a person who has been convicted of practising a profession to which the two Ordinances apply without being registered.
2 This reference relates to members of the Social Workers Registration Board holding office at the Governor's pleasure.
3 Section 19A(6)(a) of the Medical Registration Ordinance (Cap. 161). This reference relates to the application by a registered medical practitioner who has been practising overseas and returns to Hong Kong to resume practice for the transfer of his name from the non-resident list to the resident list.
4 This reference relates to applications for registration under the Medical Practitioners Ordinance (Cap. 161) where the applicant has been registered, or practising as a medical practitioner in a state or territory outside Hong Kong.
5 & 6 These references are adapted to reflect the change of affiliation of the Hong Kong Red Cross from the British Red Cross Society to the Red Cross Society of China with effect from 1 July 1997.
7 The definition of "Charter" relates to the Royal Charter dated the 3rd September 1908 by which the British Red Cross Society was incorporated. The deletion is consequential upon the change of affiliation of the Hong Kong Red Cross with effect from 1 July 1997.