Zimmerman backed for 'super seats' poll

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 25 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 25 July, 2012, 12:00am


The Civic Party's Dutch-born district councillor Paul Zimmerman says he has enough nominations to contest the 'super seats' race in September's Legislative Council election.

But the final decision depends on discussions with fellow party members this week.

After obtaining Chinese nationality last week, Zimmerman began canvassing nominations for the election to run for either one of the five super seats, or as an independent in Hong Kong Island, although this could hurt the bids of fellow party members Kenneth Chan Ka-lok and Tanya Chan to win two seats in the constituency.

Zimmerman said after a two-hour meeting with party leaders last night: 'There are, in principle, enough nominations available. But the issue is ... how to run the campaign and how to work together.'

A district councillor needs 15 nominations from other district councillors to run in the newly-created super seats functional constituency that will be elected by a citywide ballot of the 3.2 million voters who cannot vote in any other functional constituency.

Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said the Neo-Democrats, which hold eight seats in the District Councils, would nominate Zimmerman if he runs as a party member.

But he said they would still need to resolve issues such as budget and campaign strategy with the Civic Party's five teams running in the geographical constituencies before making a final decision.

However, Leong said they did not discuss last night whether Zimmerman would run in Hong Kong Island if he could not contest a super seat.

Meanwhile, People Power's Wong Yuk-man is the only one among the city's 10 best-known lawmakers to see a rise in popularity over the past three months, according to a University of Hong Kong survey.

While Wong's approval rating rose by 4.1 points, all the other nine legislators, irrespective of their political affiliation, suffered rating slumps, according to a poll of 1,015 people held from July 12 to 19 by HKU's Public Opinion Programme.

Wong, whose rating is 35.2 out of 100 points, and fellow People Power member Albert Chan Wai-yip were the main advocates of filibustering in Legco's scrutiny of a by-election bill.

The lawmaker with the biggest rating drop was New People's Party chairwoman Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee.