Alumni back new plan to reform CUHK council

An alternate proposal to reform the Chinese University’s governing body – different from the one put forward by three lawmakers – has garnered the support of hundreds of alumni.

Kelvin Yeung, an alumnus sitting on the university council, started an online petition for his plan with two other alumni, based on a previous proposal from the council.

He said the legislators – Tommy Cheung, Bill Tang and Lau Kwok-fan, who are also members of the council – had not consulted other members on their bill plan, adding that he wants to strike a balance between being accountable to the public and remaining an autonomous institution.

Yeung proposed keeping a higher ratio of alumni members and a lower proportion of lawmakers in the council, as well as lowering the threshold for hiring the vice-chancellor and provost, as compared to Cheung’s plan.

“[The lawmakers’ proposal] is not the mechanism of most universities in Hong Kong. Setting an unnecessarily high threshold for hiring the vice-chancellor and provost will not help recruit outstanding university management personnel, and will have a negative impact on the university’s future development,” he said in a statement.

Around 700 people, most of them CUHK alumni, had signed the online petition as of Monday afternoon.

Among the list of signatories are Hector Chan, the head of the university’s New Asia College; David Hui, who teaches respiratory medicine at the university; and Leonard Cheng, president of Lingnan University who graduated from CUHK.

RTHK has reached out to the three lawmakers for comment.

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