Cyd Ho joins crowded island race for pan-democrat votes

PUBLISHED : Friday, 25 July, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 25 July, 2008, 12:00am

Former pan-democrat legislator Cyd Ho Sau-lan yesterday launched her bid for a political comeback, joining the already crowded race for the votes of the camp's supporters on Hong Kong Island.

'At a time when the government is relying so much on political spin and cannot tell black from white, officials are managing the public rather than serving the people. I hope to bring people's voices inside [the Legislative Council chamber],' Ms Ho said as she submitted her nomination form.

With the Democratic Party's Hong Kong Island campaign having suffered a blow this week with the decision of a veteran member to quit and run as an independent, Ms Ho's chances of winning one of the six seats may have increased.

Ada Wong Ying-kay, a former chairwoman of Wan Chai District Council who is campaigning for Ms Ho, said the pan-democratic camp could win four seats if families split their votes between its candidates.

Kam Nai-wai, the Central and Western district councillor who heads the Democratic Party's ticket in the constituency, was in damage-control mode yesterday after Eastern district councillor Lai Chi-keong's decision to resign and run against the party.

Mr Lai declared his candidacy on Wednesday and criticised the party for blocking his chances of getting on the Democrats' ticket.

Mr Kam said: 'I will step up the frequency of canvassing for votes in Eastern District all week.'

A party source admitted Mr Lai's move had further damaged the party's image and would inevitably affect its chances.

'First there was Sin Chung-kai, now there is Lai Chi-keong. People will think the party is plagued by internal problems,' the source said. Mr Sin, the legislator for the information technology functional constituency, had sought support to run for a directly elected seat in Kowloon West, then switched his attention to the island. But he bowed out in the face of strong opposition.

Mr Lai, who has little chance of winning a seat, yesterday denied he was seeking revenge against the party.

'I will help Kam Nai-wai out if his situation is too critical,' he said.

Last night, the party's central committee expressed regret at Mr Lai's resignation after he failed to secure support in internal screening for possible Legco candidates.

The government received three nominations for geographical constituencies and two nominations for functional constituencies yesterday.