Jubilant villagers yesterday staged banquets to celebrate their landmark victory over the Government on voting rights. Delighted about the ruling, non-indigenous villagers in Po Toi O in Sai Kung and Shek Wu Tong in Yuen Long voted to heal any rifts with indigenous villagers. However, they insisted they would continue their fight to eliminate other inequalities between the two groups. The Court of Final Appeal ruled the existing electoral system for village representatives was unlawful. An appeal brought by the Government and a representative of indigenous villagers was unanimously dismissed. Judges said the electoral system which deprives non-indigenous villagers of their right to vote or to stand as candidates was unreasonable. The judges ruled the electoral system was in breach of the Bill of Rights and the Sex Discrimination Ordinance and the Secretary for Home Affairs would be bound not to approve any person elected as village representative under such arrangements. Tse Kwan-sang, who launched the court action on behalf of non-indigenous villagers in Shek Wu Tong, said: 'Many people misunderstood us. We are not struggling against indigenous villagers or stealing things from them. What belongs to them still belongs to them. We are only fighting for the right to vote and to be voted for. It should be something all villagers have a right to.' Mr Tse said non-indigenous villagers had been kept in the dark over government policy and private developers' plans as only indigenous villagers were informed of these, and claimed they often took advantage of this. Mr Tse stressed indigenous villagers' property rights would not be altered after the landmark court ruling as it only concerned political rights. 'Looking forward, we want to unite with the indigenous villagers to remove all the unfairness,' he said. Chan Wah, who represented Po Toi O villagers in the case, was so happy that he clutched a copy of the court judgment all day. 'This is something that I have been fighting for years with so much effort and money,' he said. Mr Chan, 68, said he had lived in the village all his life but had never had the right to vote. 'It is incorrect. It is unfair,' he said. Cheung Kwan, the former Po Toi O village leader who is an indigenous villager, was happy about the ruling. 'I am an indigenous villager but I don't feel it is a big deal,' he said. Mr Cheung was voted as leader of the village by both groups in June for a second term but the Government did not recognise his position in advance of the Court of Final Appeal ruling. Mr Cheung did not expect the village would be divided by the ruling. 'We are living in the same village, why do some have the rights and some don't? We should all be equal,' he said, adding that the right to vote in elections was written clearly in the Basic Law. 'I don't think that the Government will seek Beijing's re-interpretation because it is the SAR's own affair,' he said. Chung Ying-kwai, who filed a similar court case on behalf of Ha Kwai Chung village in Tsuen Wan, said the victory was a boost to their own case.