Civic Party's Audrey Eu won't defend Legco seat
The Civic Party is preparing to contest September's Legislative Council election without political heavyweight Audrey Eu Yuet-mee.
The name of Eu, a legislator for 12 years and the soul of the pan-democratic camp, was missing from the party's candidates to contest the 35 directly elected seats.
'Audrey is not in the selection process this year,' party chairman Kenneth Chan Ka-lok said. 'We will continue to do our very best in the coming election and think of every possible way to help the pan-democrats [win more seats].'
One pundit said Eu would be irreplaceable for the pan-democratic camp. 'She is a star politician. Her professional image as a barrister and her charm can attract electors who are not traditionally supporters of the Civic Party,' Professor Ma Ngok of Chinese University said.
'It is questionable whether the support for her can be transferred to her party members.'
Eu, 59, has been saying for five years she intends to withdraw from the political front line. In 2007 a 3mm tumour was found in an artery in her brain. The chances of the tumour bursting were slim, but if it did happen she could suffer a stroke, she said. Her family would rather she quit and rest more, she said.
Tanya Chan, elected with Eu on Hong Kong Island in 2008, will seek re-election, as will party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit - in Kowloon East - and Ronny Tong Ka-wah in New Territories East. Newcomer Dr Kwok Ka-ki will contest New Territories West; journalist Claudia Mo Man-ching, who lost in Kowloon West in 2008, will try again to win a seat there.
Tsuen Wan councillor Sumly Chan Yuen-sum will run for one of the five 'super seats' in the functional constituency for district councils - so called because those elected will have a bigger mandate than colleagues because three million electors citywide can vote for them.