Challenger to announce on Wednesday that he has sufficient nominations Chief executive challenger Alan Leong Kah-kit is set to announce on Wednesday he has secured enough nominations to stand in the election for the top job - a day before incumbent Donald Tsang Yam-kuen declares his candidacy. Democratic Party member Wong Sing-chi, who also sits on the 800-strong Election Committee to choose the chief executive in March and who signed up to nominate Mr Leong yesterday, said the challenger had already received 90 nominations, just 10 short of the total he needs to run. A source close to Mr Leong said the Civic Party legislator was planning to announce that he had gained his entry ticket to the election on Wednesday. However, a spokesman for Mr Leong's campaign office declined to confirm whether he had received the 90 nominations. It has been widely reported that Mr Tsang is planning to declare his candidacy on Thursday. He will then brief Election Committee members on his platform on Friday. The nomination period for the chief executive election will run from February 14 to March 1, with Election Committee members casting their votes for Hong Kong's next leader on March 25. In an unprecedented move, Beijing loyalists are considering organising election forums to which Mr Tsang and Mr Leong will be invited, with a source close to the central government's liaison office in Hong Kong saying the office had approved the move. The organisers will include representatives from the business subsectors, from the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and Hong Kong deputies to the National People's Congress. One or two closed-door election forums are expected to be held. 'We are planning to invite Mr Leong to attend our forums to explain his platform, and it seems that he will get the entry ticket to the election,' said an Election Committee member, who is one of the organisers. A source close to Mr Tsang's election campaign team said the move reflected that the central government had made a change to its strategy. The source said this was not just because Mr Leong would become an official challenger. 'It can enhance the recognition of the election among Hong Kong people, and it is also good for the expected winner, Mr Tsang,' the source said. James Sung Lap-kung, a political commentator at City University, said Mr Leong might receive a courtesy reply from Liao Hui, director of the State Council's Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, saying that he had received his platform and related letters. Professor Sung said it was not a question of how many votes Mr Tsang and Mr Leong could secure from the Election Committee members but a battle for them to win public support. 'It is obvious that both of them play it like a direct election,' he said. He said Mr Leong could not gain an advantage by acting as a 'victim' who was being ignored by Beijing-loyalist Election Committee members, because he would be given the chance to explain his platform. About 100 pan-democracy electors on the Election Committee are organising a live televised election debate for March 7 at Baptist University between Mr Leong and Mr Tsang. A spokesman for the organisers, Charles Mok, an elector from the committee's information technology subsector, said they had written to both men inviting them to attend.