Press Releases in Hong Kong

HK residents confident of LegCo diversity

Majority in the city looks forward to a more representative new legislature

This photo dated April 25, 2019 shows the exterior wall of the Legislative Council building at Tamar, Hong Kong. (PHOTO / HKSAR GOVERNMENT)

More than 70 percent of Hong Kong people are confident that the upcoming Legislative Council election will provide broad participation and adequate competition under the revamped electoral system, a new survey has found.

The study, released on Thursday by the Hong Kong Research Association, also found that 63 percent of respondents believe that the next LegCo will be diverse, with members of different political persuasions.

Researchers believe the optimism could be related to the active registration of candidates since the nomination began on Oct 30. As of Thursday, 60 nomination forms have been received by the returning officers for different constituencies. The nomination period will run through Nov 12.

The voters expect to see people across the political spectrum announce their intention to run in the LegCo elections in the coming days, according to the survey.

READ MORE: Hong Kong kicks off LegCo election nomination

The questionnaire, conducted between Oct 30 and Wednesday, polled 1,069 registered voters by phone.

Thirty-two percent of those surveyed said land and housing issues are their top election concerns, followed by 17 percent focusing on poverty problems and elderly care, and 14 percent on medical and health issues.

The Constitution and governance, education, labor and employment, and economic development also received attention from the respondents.

In their conclusion, the researchers called on candidates from all walks of life to actively participate in the Legislative Council elections with patriotism, competence to serve the community, and the conviction to serve the people.

With wide participation, the election will “create healthy competition, promote good governance in Hong Kong, and benefit the people”.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor on Tuesday emphasized that all sincere patriots, regardless of their political stance, have a fair chance to run in the elections and be elected in accordance with the law.

The revamped electoral system aims to ensure the practice of “patriots administering Hong Kong”. Under this principle, the city’s legislature will have lawmakers with different voices and diverse backgrounds, Lam said in a social media post.

Lam said she believes that the future Legislative Council will reflect more balanced participation and broader representation, and provide a more rational and pragmatic atmosphere for political discussion.

In another survey released by Hong Kong’s Bauhinia Institute think tank on Oct 29, about 77.9 percent of respondents said they believe that all sincere patriots will have a fair chance to participate in the LegCo election.

More than 83 percent expect the election to fully reflect the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong”, and over 70 percent believe there will be healthy competition as well as an active voter turnout.

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The number of seats in LegCo has been expanded from 70 to 90 according to a decision announced in March by the National People’s Congress, China’s top legislature.

In the LegCo election, to be held on Dec 19, 20 seats are to be returned by direct elections from geographical constituencies around Hong Kong; 30 from functional constituencies covering different professional sectors; and the remaining 40 from the newly elected 1,500-member Election Committee.

As of Thursday, the Registration and Electoral Office had received nine nomination forms for the 10 geographical constituencies; 28 nomination forms for the 28 functional constituencies; and 23 forms for the Election Committee constituency.