Democratic Party lawmakers have poor attendance records at district council meetings, it has emerged. Professor Lau Siu-kai, associate director of Chinese University's Centre of Asian Studies, said the data may explain the Democrats' poor performance in the September Legco election. 'It shows the Democrats don't pay too much attention to district work. Also, they don't have strong connections and ties with people and groups in the districts.' Legislator Albert Ho Chun-yan, who stepped down recently as party vice-chairman, had an attendance rate of 50 per cent, the lowest of the 37 members of Tuen Mun District Council. Mr Ho attended two out of six meetings of the social service committee, and three out of seven meetings of the transport committee. He resigned from three other sub-groups in February after failing to attend any meetings, according to figures from the Home Affairs Department for January to November this year. James To Kun-sun, another of the party's lawmakers, attended nine out of 20 meetings at Yau Tsim Mong District Council. His colleague Andrew Cheng Kar-foo took part in half of the meetings of two district committees in Sha Tin. Former party legislator Huang Chen-ya only attended six of 13 meetings in Southern District. The data comes as the party tries to reform itself in the wake of its major setback at the Legislative Council elections, when it won 170,000 fewer votes than in the 1998 poll. Mr Ho said yesterday that many meetings in the district clashed with panels and bills committees of the legislature. He also blamed the traffic. 'It takes me an hour to travel from Legco to Tuen Mun. It's difficult to catch up with some meetings. I have to do better in terms of time management. I may step down from some panels in Legco and cut my workload.' Mr Ho is a member of six Legco panels, overseeing various policy areas. His attendance rate at Legco sittings for the session that started in October is 93 per cent. His attendance rate for the Legco panels is between 20 and 100 per cent. Mr To said some meetings clashed, but items discussed in some meetings in the district were not controversial and his views could be expressed by party colleagues in the municipal body. 'I think we should look at a member's quality participation rather than attendance rate,' he said. Lawmakers from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong had a better record. Legislators such as Ip Kwok-him, Lau Kong-wah and Chan Kam-lam had an average attendance rate of over 80 per cent. Liberal Party chairman James Tien Pei-chun, who won a seat in Central and Western District Council last year after a high-profile campaign, attended 23 of 27 meetings. Frederick Fung Kin-kee, chairman of the Association for Democracy and People's Livelihood, maintained the best record of all lawmakers by taking part in all meetings of Shamshuipo District Council.