Lists key to understanding how electoral system operates

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 10 September, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 10 September, 2000, 12:00am

THE 24 seats in the geographical elections will be returned according to the percentage of votes secured by each campaign ticket.

Parties rank candidates on the tickets, who will then be elected in the constituencies according to the ranking.

Non-affiliated hopefuls may also form their own tickets or run on a one-person ticket.

A voter will put a tick beside his or her preferred ticket, rather than a particular candidate.

Under the largest-remainder formula, the chances of winning a seat will be based on a 'quota' obtained by dividing the number of votes by the number of seats in the constituency.

If, for instance, the five-seat Hong Kong Island constituency has 300,000 votes, the top candidate on any ticket that secures one-fifth - 60,000 - of the votes will win a seat.

The second candidate on the list will win if the ticket secures 120,000 votes or more.

If the ticket still has votes remaining, it may compete for the rest of the seats together with other tickets with fewer than 60,000 votes. The ticket with the highest number of votes will get the seats.

The so-called list voting system and the largest-remainder formula form part of the proportional representation electoral method, which replaced the pre-handover single-seat single-vote system in 1998.

The majority of the 28 profession-based functional constituencies are to be returned by simple majority.

But in four functional constituencies - agriculture and fisheries, transport, insurance and Heung Yee Kuk, the number of electors is so small that they have to rank their preferences of candidates.

The six seats to be returned by the Election Committee will be determined by 'first-past-the-post', with electors choosing no more or no less than six names under the so-called block-vote system.