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The Public Sector in Hong Kong$
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Ian Scott

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9789622091726

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789622091726.001.0001

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Accountability and the Political System

Accountability and the Political System

Chapter:
(p.48) (p.49) 3 Accountability and the Political System
Source:
The Public Sector in Hong Kong
Author(s):

Ian Scott

Publisher:
Hong Kong University Press
DOI:10.5790/hongkong/9789622091726.003.0016

Determining political accountability of the government is measured by the capacity of external bodies, be they voters, legislatures, or superior levels of the government, to impose sanctions on government officials in the event of unsatisfactory performance. Based on this criterion of political accountability, Hong Kong's government is accountable to the government of the People's Republic of China and Principal Officials are answerable to the Chief Executive. The Chief Executive and Principal Officials meanwhile are weakly accountable to the Legislative Council and the voting public. Political accountability rests not solely on the provisions of the constitution but also on the way in which power is exercised. The government can provide conventions that introduce accountability into the government's actions, or it may act in ways that violate the constitution. It can provide measures within the framework of the constitution that may alter the power exercised by the government. This chapter examines the effects of the measures undertaken by the government on broader issues of representation and accountability in Hong Kong.

Keywords:   political accountability, government, accountability, power, representation, accountability, Hong Kong government, Principal Officials

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