Hong Kong localism and independence

Hong Kong Indigenous leader Edward Leung to challenge Legco poll results for New Territories East

Leung confirms lawyers will try to submit court application on Friday afternoon

PUBLISHED : Friday, 07 October, 2016, 9:43am
UPDATED : Friday, 07 October, 2016, 9:44am

Edward Leung Tin-kei, the Hong Kong independence advocate who was barred from running in the Legislative Council polls in September, will launch an election petition on Friday .

If successful, the activist could, in an unprecedented move, overturn the poll results for the New Territories East geographical constituency, which he had sought to contest.

Responding to a Post inquiry, the Hong Kong Indigenous leader confirmed lawyers were trying to submit the application in the afternoon, and he would meet the press later.

The Electoral Affairs Commission invalidated Leung’s candidacy in August on the grounds that he advocated that Hong Kong split from China.

The decision came despite Leung making a U-turn from his previous stance, even signing a “confirmation form” from the commission reinforcing his acceptance of Hong Kong’s status as an inalienable part of China.

A returning officer for New Territories East said she did not believe Leung had “genuinely changed his previous stance for independence”, quoting media reports and Facebook posts detailing his past remarks.

The decision was labelled by Leung and his supporters as one made “under rule of man, not rule of law”.

A government spokesman denied that there had been political censorship, insisting that the officers had acted lawfully to ensure the elections would be run in accordance with the Basic Law.

Five other candidates also had their nominations invalidated by returning officers over their advocacy of independence.

Chan Ho-tin, the Hong Kong National Party convenor who had refused to sign the form before he was disqualified, was said to have already launched an election petition to challenge the results for the New Territories West constituency.