Legco Elections 2012

Live coverage: Pan-democrats hold onto veto power in Legco

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 09 September, 2012, 11:27pm
UPDATED : Monday, 10 September, 2012, 7:53pm

Updated 2.24pm

Pan-democrats win 3 new district council functional constituency seats

Pan-democrat candidates have won three of the five new district council (second) functional constituency seats in the Legislative Council election, official vote results confirmed on Monday.

The pro-government camp only managed to win two seats, after Democratic Party chairman Albert Ho Chun-yan beat DAB vice chairman Lau Kong-wah by a narrow margin to win the last of the five so-called “super lawmaker” seats.

Fellow Democratic Party member James To Kun-sun achieved the highest number of votes among the seven candidates, with 316,468 votes.

Another candidate from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress Starry Lee Wai-king ranked second with 277,143 votes.

The third seat goes to the Association for Democracy and People’s Livelihood Frederick Fung Kin-kee, a pan-democrat, who won 262,172 votes. The Hong Kong Federation of Trade Union’s Chan Yuen-han, from the pro-government camp, won the fourth seat with 246,196 votes.

Ho won 228,840 votes to get the last seat, narrowly beating Lau, who obtained 199,732 votes.

The seventh candidate Pamela Peck Wan-kam won 61,321 votes.

The newly-created seats are called “super lawmaker seats”. This is because they are part of a citywide ballot with 3.2 million voters ineligible to vote in other functional constituencies. This gives winners of the seats the greatest mandate among legislators.  Reporting by Lai Ying-kit

Updated 1.40pm

Pan-democrats to keep veto power in Legco

Pan-democrats can keep their veto power in the Legislative Council after winning six seats in the latest results in the Legco election’s functional constituencies – up from two seats during the last term.  

With the results for five “super seats” still to come, pan-democrats on Monday have now won at least 24 of 65 seats including the functional and geographical constituencies – securing a third of the total number of seats.

Few supporters of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying managed to win functional constituency seats – originally held by supporters of Henry Tang Ying-yen – Leung’s rival in the March chief executive election.

One of them was Christopher Cheung Wah-fung, who won the financial services seat by a margin of six tickets. He said the Legco election result had nothing to do with him switching to vote for Leung at the last minute – despite having originally nominated Henry Tang.

The seat was formerly held by Chim Pui-chung – an outspoken supporter of Tang. Chim did not seek re-election.

‘‘This is not related to whom I voted for as chief executive. As long as we are united under a Hong Kong camp, we can do some good with the economy”, Cheung explained.

Tong Tse Wai-chuen, who had also supported Leung, won the architectural, surveying and planning seat – formerly held by Patrick Lau Sau-shing, who fell short by 61 votes.

Meanwhile, the pan-democrats managed to obtain functional constituency seats considered crucial for them – and even win two more.

The Professional Teachers’ Association retained a seat in the education sector after Cheung Man-kwong did not seek re-election in the functional constituencies. Ip Kin-yuen won by a margin of around 30,000 tickets.

The legal sector seat was successfully transferred from the Civic Party’s Margaret Ng Oi-yee, who retired this year, to party member and barrister Dennis Kwok Wing-hang. Kwok won by 2528 votes. He led his rival – former Law Society president Albert Wong Kwai-huen – by 558 votes.

Kwok said he won because voters from the legal sector valued Hong Kong’s core values – and trusted him.

“Hongkongers always have a higher expectation towards the legal sector representative, especially at a time when human rights and press freedoms are at risk. I am deeply grateful they trusted me and I promise I will do my best not to fail them”, said Kwok, with tears in his eyes.

Wong admitted being “surprised” by the result in which he had been tipped to be the winner in opinion polls prior to the election. Wong said he lost because he had not been as well organised during the campaign as Kwok – who had been strongly supported by his party.

“The crucial reason is that I lacked the party’s backing. I thought I had a team of young people who could compensate for the lack of organisation, but it still seems [we were] unable to compete with the Civic Party”, Wong said.

Dr Leung Ka-lau managed to keep his seat in the medical sector, as did Cheung Kwok-che in the social welfare sector and Joseph Lee Kok-long in the health service sector.  Reporting by Emily Tsang

Updated 11.50am

Albert Ho resigns as Democratic Party chairman

Albert Ho Chun-yan announced on Monday he was stepping down as Democratic Party chairman after admitting to “serious failures” in his party’s Legislative Council election campaign.

The Democrats only managed to win four out of 35 seats in the geographical constituencies, dropping three seats in the New Territories East and New Territories West.

Ho bowed in front of the press and expressed his “most sincere apologies”. Discussing the election result, Ho said he did not think his party had paid a price for negotiating with the central government’s liaison office or for supporting the government’s 2010 electoral package.

“I still believe the reform package we passed in 2010 served the interests of Hong Kong, and had the support of the general public,” Ho said. “But in recent months, the public has been impatient with the current administration, and maybe some of them preferred to choose people who were much more aggressive in their stances and roles, that might cause some to lose votes.”

But Ho believed this was not the main cause of the failure, and his party would meet to review the results and develop future strategies.

Ho also refused to comment on whether the Civic Party’s excess votes contributed to the Democrats’ defeats.

“I don’t want to criticise our allies, because in an election, every party has their choice and can only make their best bid to win.”

He emphasised that he was determined to step down, and it was unlikely anyone could change his mind. Vice-chairwoman Emily Lau Wai-hing will be the acting chairwoman before a new chairman is elected at the end of the year.

“We need to rejuvenate the party’s image, and be more lively when we express ideas,” Ho stressed. “Our leadership right now still believes firmly that being rational and practical is the right direction forward… there is still the need to negotiate with Beijing, to achieve universal suffrage, and I think other parties should consider that too.”  Reporting by Tony Cheung

Updated 10.40am

Democratic Party chairman Albert Ho Chun-yan says he will step down - due to his party's poor performance.

Updated 9.55am

Democratic Party suffers heavy losses in election

Pan-democrats won half of the 35 geographical seats in the Legislative Council elections – with heavy losses suffered by the Democratic Party.

Direct seats held by Democrats were slashed from eight to four seats. Among geographical candidates seeking re-election, only Emily Lau Wai-hing kept her seat in the New Territories East. Wong Sing-chi lost in the same constituency, while veteran lawmaker Lee Wing-tat lost in the New Territories West – securing only 983 votes.

The Civic Party won a seat in each of the five geographical constituencies. Attempting to win two seats in both the New Territories West and Hong Kong Island, they achieved the highest share of the votes in both constituencies, but failed to secure the second seats for incumbents Audrey Eu Yuet-mee and Tanya Chan.

Beijing-loyalist Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress for Hong Kong recorded a perfect victory – winning nine out of nine seats – across the five direct constituencies, up from seven in 2008.

But results for the other major Beijing-loyalist party Federation of Trade Unions was less favourable, with original labour incumbent Ip Wai-ming losing in the New Territories East.

Ip issued apology to his supporters and attributed the failure to the party’s lack of experience in district work within its constituencies.

“The FTU has to review our tactics. I have to say sorry to my volunteers,” said Ip, who received 24,458 votes.

He also hinted that the DAB had a role in his loss. “I would not say their deployment stole my votes, but one can understand the whole scenario by looking at the vote share data.”

DAB candidates Gary Chan Hak-kan and Elizabeth Quat won two seats in the constituency – getting 40,977 and 46,139 votes, respectively

Liberal Party’s chairwoman Miriam Lau Kin-yee lost in her bid to get a seat in Legco’s Hong Kong Island Constituency. She said she would resign from her party as chairwoman and let the party decide who should replace her.

“I failed to lead my party to success in the election. It’s time to let someone else become party leader,” she said. Lau said that her desire to serve the Hong Kong people would always be there. She had not decided whether to run again in the next election in four years time.

Meanwhile, many new faces were elected into Legco, including Democratic Party’s Helena Wong Pik-wan and Wu Chi-wai. They called for unity among the pan-democrats – as there was now a split between moderate Democratic Party and the radical People Power.

“In the face of many problems in society, the pan-democrats have to unite,” Wong said.

Results for the functional constituencies were expected to be announced at 9am on Monday morning.

Lingnam University’s political scientist Dr Li Pang-Kwong said some pro- establishment candidates, such as Mak Mei-kuen, had taken away votes from the pan- democratic candidates, such as Lee Wing-tat, by being more active in the local community.

Lee admitted that this might be the reason for his inability to win more votes.  Reporting by Tanna Chong

Updated 8.48am

Winners celebrate after election results are released Monday morning...

Updated 6.38am 

Interim counting results

Interim counting results of District Council (second) Functional Constituency

Interim counting results of Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency

Interim counting results of Kowloon West Geographical Constituency

Interim counting results of New Territories West Geographical Constituency

Interim counting results of New Territories East Geographical Constituency

Overall interim counting results

Updated 4.11am

High voter turnout in HK polls after 10-day protest 

Voters thronged the polls on Sunday – many fuelled by anger over national education classes – to vote for a new legislature, in a sign of more problems ahead for C.Y. Leung.

About 53 per cent of 3.4 million registered voters cast their ballots – up from 45.2 per cent in the last election in 2008 – a day after Leung backed down from a plan for compulsory pro-China national education classes in schools, a policy that drew tens of thousands of people to a 10-day protest.

Although the outcome will not change Leung’s policy position, high voter turnout is likely to benefit the opposition pro-democracy camp and make it more difficult for him to pass measures in a fractious legislature during his five-year term.

“The national education issue antagonised many parents, so many of them came out to vote,” said Lingnan University politics professor Li Pang-kwong, referring to the patriotism classes that protesters described as Communist Party propaganda aimed at indoctrinating children.

“It is also because of dissatisfaction with the performance of the Hong Kong government and emergence of a strong Hong Kong identity due to unhappiness with having to compete with new settlers and tourists from mainland China for housing, transport, hospital beds and so on,” Li said.

Since taking office in July, C. Y. Leung has been fire-fighting a string of China-linked controversies including soaring high property prices and overcrowding in hospitals that Hongkongers blame on new migrants and visitors from the mainland.

Sunday’s polls are a test of public support for Leung and his pro-Beijing allies on the one hand, and the opposition pro-democracy camp on the other, which is seeking to maintain its one-third majority to give it veto power over policies. Voters were electing just over half the seats in the 70-member chamber. Reporting by Reuters


Updated 2.26am

Early exit poll puts pan-democrats ahead

According to an a exit poll conducted by the Public Opinion Programme (POP) of the University of Hong Kong posted at 10pm on Sunday, the new “super seat” contester James To Kun-sun of the Democratic Party stood a very high chance of winning among the seven slates running for the five seats in the district council constituency.

Starry Lee Wai-king of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong and Albert Ho Chun-yan of the Democratic Party have a relatively higher chance of winning than believed earlier.

Chan Ka-lok of the Civic Party was rated a very high chance of winning among the 14 slates in the Hong Kong Island geographical constituency.

Jasper Tsang Yok-sing and Christopher Chung Shu-kun of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong and Sin Chung-kai of the Democratic Party had relatively bigger chance of winning, pollsters said.

The chances of winning of Cyd Ho Sau-lan of the Labour Party, Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee of the New People’s Party and Miriam Lau Kin-yee of the Liberal Party are hanging in the balance, the survey said.

In the Kowloon East geographical constituency, seven slates out of nine – including Civic Party’s Alan Leong Kah-kit, People Power’s Wong Yeung-tat and Democratic Party’s Wu Chi-wai – were deemed to have a relatively better chance of winning.

In the Kowloon West geographical constituency, three pan-democrats – Wong Pik-wan of the Democratic Party, Wong Yuk-man of People Power and Claudia Mo Man-ching of the Civic Party and the pro-establishment Leung Mei-fun of Kowloon West New Dynamic – were predicted to have relatively higher chances of winning.

In the New Territories West geographical constituency, only Civic Party’s Kwok Ka-ki was rated as having a very high chance of winning among the 16 slates and 11 slates – including Lee Cheuk-yan of the Labour Party, Albert Chan Wai-yip of People Power and Tam Yiu-chung of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong – were considered to have similar chances of winning.

For the highly-contested New Territories East geographical constituency, the two slates believed to have very high chance of winning are “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung and Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong’s Elizabeth Quat, while other seven slates – including Liberal Party’s James Tien Pei-chun and Federation of Trade Unions’ Ip Wai-ming – had similar chances of winning.

However, Ivan Choy Chi- keung, a political scientist at the Chinese University, said the exit poll results were factually representative of the way voting took place since competition was very keen amid rumours on the internet that voters gave false information to exit pollsters.

“Some small details were missing between the options ‘very high chance of winning’, ‘relatively high chance of winning’ and ‘fair chance of winning’ and even after looking into the exit polls, the whole picture of the election results was still hard to be analysed,” said Choy. Reporting by Johnny KS Tam

Updated 12.56am

Fung and Chan neck-and-neck for super seat

ADPL's superseat candidate Frederick Fung Kin-kee said exit poll results predicted that he has narrowed the margin with the FTU's Chan Yuen-han and has an equal chance of winning, while the DAB's Lau Kong-wa has fallen back in polls.

Fung said it was hard to be sure of his chances of winning, but he said that he ran for super seat because he wanted to provide one more pan-democratic option for voters. If he loses, Fung was fully prepared to bear the political consequences.

His fellow member Tam Kwok-kiu, who runs for Kowloon West, said he has as much of a chance as winning as the  DAB's Ann Chiang.

Reporting by Simpson Cheung 

​Updated 11.52pm

Ho still wary of exit polls

Although it is shown in the exit poll that Ho Chun-yan is likely to secure a seat in the Legco, the Democratic Party leader says he remains doubtful about the exit polls.

If pan-democrats fail to gain three of the five seats in the district council (second) functional constituency, Ho says he does not mind discussing whether he should take responsibility for the failure, but added the result of an election is affected by many factors. Reporting by Gary Cheung

​Updated 11.21pm

Competition fiercest ever, says Democratic Party chairman

"I think that I will have less votes than Frederick Fung Kin-kee, as my situation has been worsening. This was beyond my expectations," said Albert Ho Chun-yan, who acknowledged that it may be too late to make the emergency call to voters.

Ho said competition in the election this year was the fiercest ever, as there are more pan-democratic parties.

He said proportional representation was making it more difficult for big parties to maintain their number of seats this year, and people were splitting their votes in order to get more democrats into the legislative council. Reporting by Gary Cheung

Updated 9.35pm

Civic Party candidate reports voting irregularities

The Civic Party’s Ronny Tong Ka-wah, candidate for New Territories East, said two voters at the City One polling station in Sha Tin told him that when they went to cast their votes, they found their names already registered as “voted”. He said both have reported to the police.

He also said some voters were allowed to vote with masks on, and said the Registration and Electoral Office should follow up.

“I am very disappointed. This is challenging our corruption-free election system,” Tong said.

At 8.30pm, Tong issued a call to vote in Tseung Kwan O, with fellow party members Margaret Ng. He said the high turnover rate in the morning indicated that the pro-government election machinery is working.

“Pan-democratic supporters usually won’t vote that early in the day,” he said, adding that he is preparing for the worst, as opinion polls in the past two weeks indicated he was ranked ninth. Reporting by Simpson Cheung

Updated 9.25pm

Voter turnout at 43.85pc, up from 2008

Overall voter turnout in Sunday’s Legislative elections was 43.85 per cent by 8.30pm, up from four years ago when the turnout was 36.66 per cent in the same period (from 7.30am to 8.30pm).

So far, 1,520,003 of 3,466,201 registered voters have cast their ballots. Others have until 10.30pm on Sunday to go to the polls.

With more registered voters than in 2004 and 2008’s elections, this year appears to be on track to beat the overall turnout in 2008, which was 45.2 per cent. In 2004, 1,784,406 (of 3,207,227, or 55.64 per cent) registered voters came out, according to government figures.

Updated 8.47pm

Kwok rallies for Audrey Eu

Kwok Ka-ki of the Civic Party is now garnering votes in the city centre of Tuen Mun, in the New Territories West constituency, with the slogan "Keep [Audrey] Eu Yuet-mee". He said he was confident that Eu could be re-elected to represent the Hong Kong Island geographical constituency. Reporting by Jolie Ho


Updated 8.10pm

On the campaign trail

Polling stations close in about two hours. Here's a look at how some of the Legco candidates spent their Sunday:

Updated 6pm

C.Y. votes, says he's happy to see end of protest

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying was at the polling booth early on Sunday morning and happy to share the news about the end of the national education protest.

After casting his votes at the German Swiss International School’s campus on The Peak, he told the waiting media crowd that the crowd of protesters camped outside the government’s headquarters was dispersing.

Tens of thousands of protestors had been rallying outside the building in Admiralty since last Monday to express their anger at the introduction of national education in Hong Kong schools. Several engaged in hunger strikes as a form of non-violent protest.

“I hope the hunger strikers will get healthy again as soon as possible,” Leung said.

The chief executive also reiterated that he made the decision to amend the policy on the introduction of the national education curriculum on Saturday after taking various organisations’ views into account.

“I believe the new policy can satisfy many people, and can reach the biggest consensus. I also hope our education system, especially teaching and school life, can return to normal as soon as possible,” he said.

New Territories East candidate “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung and Hong Kong Island contestant Avery Ng Man-yuen, both from the League of Social Democrats, protested outside the polling station and asked Leung to explain about the illegal structures at his home.  They also threw a cardboard placard at Leung, but it did not hit him or anyone else. Reporting by Tony Cheung

Updated 5.19pm

Andrew To and ‘Long Hair’ clash with Paul Tse

Tempers flared in Kowloon Bay on Sunday afternoon as independent candidate Paul Tse Wai-Chun’s campaign to win a seat in Kowloon East was disrupted by rival Andrew To Kwan-hang and his fellow League of Social Democrats member “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung, who is standing in New Territories East.

The two arrived shortly after Tse settled at his booth at a bus terminal near Amoy Garden at around 2pm

“You are the godson of the Western District! Shame on you!” To and Leung shouted, referring to an allegedly close relationship between Tse and Beijing’s liaison office in Western District.

They followed Tse’s team in the streets for a few minutes, before Tse was forced to get into his van and leave.

To said he felt nervous about his chances of winning and called for families choosing the pan-democratic camp to “reserve one vote” for him.

During the clashes, Tse said he advocated “healthy democracy” and refused to confront his rivals face to face.

Earlier, when asked about his response to People Power’s criticism of him in a leaflet, Tse said: “This labelling tactic is childish”.

Tse also said the government should have withdrawn its national education plans long before opposition reached a boiling point. Reporting and video by Joyce Ng

Updated 5.10pm

Updated 5.03pm

Cheung confident of making comeback

Legco candidates running in the New Territories East constituency were making last-ditch efforts to woo voters on Sunday.

While the latest polls show that the Labour Party’s Fernando Cheung Chiu-hung does not have a very great chance of securing a seat, Cheung is confident he will be able to stage a comeback in Legco, where he used to be a lawmaker.

He said he had been fighting for the underprivileged for 15 years and was confident they would vote for him, especially as there were many underprivileged people living in New Territories East.

Meanwhile, People Power candidate Raymond Chan Chi-chuen said he was very confident he would get elected as the latest polls suggested he would. However, he said it would take a “miracle” for Erica Yuen Mi-ming, who is second on his slate, to win a seat.

Chan said once he was elected, his top priority would be to push the government to scrap the controversial national education as well as urging it to increase cash handouts to Hongkongers. Reporting by Phila Siu


Updated 4.42pm

Candidates unhappy with ‘smear campaigns’

Two candidates from the pan-democratic camp on Sunday afternoon hit back at smear campaigns conducted by other candidates in the Kowloon East constituency.

Democrat Wu Chi-wai said his strategy focused on countering the smear campaign by People Power’s Wong Yeung-tat.

“We have been explaining our stance on political reform in response to the attack. We are facing a tough situation being attacked by the pro-establishment parties and People Power,” Wu said.

Alan Leong Kah-kit, of the Civic Party, meanwhile, said another candidate, Independent Paul Tse Wai-Chun, “pretended to be independent” although he was “backed by Beijing’s liaison office”.

“The six pan-democrats are competing for the same source of vote. It is a very close fight,” Leong said.

The two candidates also said the government’s change of policy on national education classes had little impact on their election strategy. Reporting by Joyce Ng

Updated 4.30pm

Tough battle in massive constituency

New Territories West is looking at a chaotic battle with 16 slates of candidates scrambling for nine seats, and on Sunday morning candidates were busily deploying numerous volunteers and broadcasting devices to canvass for votes in the massive constituency.

Vehicles ranging from family cars to trucks equipped with speakers started touring around Tsuen Wan, Tin Shui Wai, Yuen Long and Tuen Mun early on Sunday morning.

Cars were also being used to take voters to the polling stations, as seen in Wang Toi Shan San Tsuen, Yuen Long.

Independent candidate Chan Keung, who comes from a rural background, placed his volunteers across major polling stations in Yuen Long and Tuen Mun.

Answering those who accused him of rarely showing up during the campaign period, he said he “had been busy handling district issues”, refusing to give further details or answer queries about previously reported vote-rigging accusations.

Civic Party candidate Audrey Eu Yuet-mee, who is second on the slate headed by  Dr Kwok Ka-ki, expressed worries about her re-election prospects.

“I will really need a lot of votes to get a seat. The battle is chaotic and I may win or lose with a margin as narrow as few thousand, or even a few hundred votes,” said Eu, who was putting in some last-minute campaign efforts with help from her husband. Reporting by Tanna Chong

Updated 4.20pm

Tam’s ADPL party fights to survive at the polls

The 25-year-old Association for Democracy and People’s Livelihood is fighting for its life – with polls showing that it could lose its only seat in the Legislative Council, says the party’s Kowloon West candidate Tam Kwok-kiu.

After the incumbent legislator for the Kowloon West constituency, Frederick Fung Kin-lee, switched to the race for one of the five new “super seats” in the functional constituency, vice-chairman Tam is left to wrestle for the party’s traditional stronghold.

Tam, 54, said his situation was “risky” as previous opinions polls indicated that his ticket was lagging behind the top five seats.

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying’s announcement on Saturday on the cancellation of a three-year trial period on national education might also add uncertainties to the results, he said.

“The cancellation may make indecisive voters opt for pro-establishment candidates, because they think the administration has made a compromise,” Tam said.

Asked if he was worried the party might lose in both constituencies, Tam said he had to try his best to canvass for votes.

“I started my electioneering today from Sham Shui Po – which is ADPL’s base,” he said. “I need to mobilise as many as our supporters to vote.”

He is hoping to keep most of Fung’s 35,440 voters from four years ago, and he estimates that he needs at least 25,000 to 30,000 votes to secure a seat.

Other candidates in the constituency include the lists led by People Power’s Wong Yuk-man, the DAB’s Ann Chiang Lai-wan, Kowloon West New Dynamic’s Priscilla Leung Mei-fun, the Civic Party’s Claudia Mo Man-ching and the Democratic Party’s Helena Wong Pik-wan, Hong Kong Awakening Association’s Lam Yi-lai, and two independent candidates Wong Yat-yuk and Wong Yee-him. Reporting by Thomas Chan

Updated 4.12pm

Lo ‘cautiously optimistic’ on poll

Independent Dr Lo Wing-lok said that to win a seat in Sunday’s election, he would need 8,000 more votes than he got in his previous, unsuccessful, attempt to succeed in the highly-competitive Hong Kong Island geographical constituency in 2008.

Riding around Chai Wai in a small open-top car, the former one-term medical sector lawmaker said on Sunday afternoon, he remained “cautiously optimistic” about his longed-for victory.

“The residents’ response seems better than in 2008,” he said. “Many said they would vote for me.”

But with the already-fierce contest among pro-democracy candidates, Lo, who calls himself a “leftist democrat”, says the fifth to seventh seats are too chaotic to be certain. He said he spent 20 per cent more on election expenditure this time.

He planned to concentrate his effort on East and Southern districts.

Updated 3.55pm

Wong targets rival in leaflet campaign…

Wong Yeung-tat, a People Power candidate in the Kowloon East constituency, started his day on Sunday in a DHL van, which he said was just giving him a ride before the driver started working.

Accompanied by People Power’s Kowloon West candidate Wong Yuk-man, he handed out new leaflets in restaurants in the morning, singling out rival Paul Tse Wai-chun, after attacking Democrat Wu Chi-wai in another leaflet on Saturday.

Asked whether he would go and confront the two, he said: “I am only reaching out to the voters.”

…while Leong calls for more support

Another candidate Alan Leong Kah-kit of the Civic Party said he asked voters to concentrate their votes on him. His assistant said: “Don’t think Alan has enough votes because he is topping the the poll. In the last election, he topped the polls, but ended up winning with barely enough votes to take the last seat.” Reporting by Joyce Ng

Updated 3.36pm

Infighting could unseat pro-Beijing candidates

Infighting among Beijing loyalist parties has added uncertainty as to who might be ultimately defeated in Sunday’s election.

Incumbent legislator Wong Kwok-hing, from the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions (FTU), has shifted constituencies from the grassroots-majority New Territories West to middle-class dominated Hong Kong Island.

“There is a crisis as households might split votes among members,” Wong said during a swift visit to Siu Sai Wan Estate. He hinted that supporters might back the FTU’s back key rival, the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, which had two teams on the island, including rolling poll-topping Legco president Jasper Tsang Yok-sing.

Wong added that he did not fear the controversial national education curriculum debate – which attracted crowds of tens of thousands of  protesters and forced Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying to backtrack on the government’s plan to implement teaching the subject just hours ahead of the poll – would affect his prospects.

The pro establishment camp also sees ex-security minister Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee and Liberal Party chairwoman Miriam Lau Kin-yee vying for one of Hong Kong Island’s seven seats.

Those contesting Hong Kong Island include: independents Hui Ching-on, Dr Lo Wing-kok, Ng Wing-chun and Ho Kar-tai; Democrat Sin Chung-kai; Christopher Lau Gar-hung of People Power; the DAB's Christopher Chung Shu-kun and Jasper Tsang Yok-sing; Cyd Ho Sau-lan of the Labour Party; Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee of the New People Party; Wong Kwok-hing of the Federation of Trade Unions; Dr Kenneth Chan Ka-lok of the Civic Party; Miriam Lau Kin-yee of the Liberal Party; and Avery Ng Man-yuen of the League of Social Democrats.  Reporting by Stuart Lau

Updated 3pm

Newcomer Christopher Lau aims high

First-time Legco election candidate Christopher Lau Gar-hung is aiming high thanks to his highly argumentative and well-known running mate in the radical People Power team.

“Realistically, we hope to score behind the Civic Party and be the second among the pan-democrats – including the Democratic Party,” said Lau, when canvassing in Quarry Bay on Sunday morning.

He is joined on his ticket by Shiu Yeuk-yuen, co-producer of the world’s first 3D erotic movie 3D Sex and Zen: Extreme Ecstasy.

“Voters should treat this poll as a referendum of confidence towards Leung Chun-ying,” Lau added.

But Lau – whose debut election attempt last year in the District Council poll resulted in only 141 votes, making him a loser – expressed his worries over the higher-than-last-time voter turnout. “This might be the effect of vote rigging planned by the pro-establishment camp,” he said.

He remains “cautiously optimistic” about his chance of winning. 

Those contesting Hong Kong Island include: independents Hui Ching-on, Dr Lo Wing-kok, Ng Wing-chun and Ho Kar-tai; Democrat Sin Chung-kai; Christopher Lau Gar-hung of People Power; the DAB's Christopher Chung Shu-kun and Jasper Tsang Yok-sing; Cyd Ho Sau-lan of the Labour Party; Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee of the New People Party; Wong Kwok-hing of the Federation of Trade Unions; Dr Kenneth Chan Ka-lok of the Civic Party; Miriam Lau Kin-yee of the Liberal Party; and Avery Ng Man-yuen of the League of Social Democrats. Reporting by Stuart Lau

Updated 2.54pm

Miriam Lau puts in final effort 

Liberal Party chairwoman Miriam Lau Kin-yee (pictured, Photo: Edward Wong) is making a last-ditch effort to distance her party from the government, in a move to secure a seat in the Hong Kong Island geographical constituency.The 65-year-old has been in Legco for more than 20 years and currently represents the transport functional constituency.

This is her first attempt to win a geographical constituency, and she admits to being a marginal candidate.

But she has been canvassing hard. Speaking in Quarry Bay on Sunday morning, her voice was already hoarse.

“I’m here to stand against violent parties,” she told voters. “If you don’t want Hong Kong to fall behind the Philippines or Vietnam... please vote for me.” 

However, her heavyweight supporter, Beijing-loyalist Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai, was not beside her on election day. Lau said Fan was leaving Hong Kong on Sunday, although “she should have cast her votes”.  

Those contesting Hong Kong Island include: independents Hui Ching-on, Dr Lo Wing-kok, Ng Wing-chun and Ho Kar-tai; Democrat Sin Chung-kai; Christopher Lau Gar-hung of People Power; the DAB's Christopher Chung Shu-kun and Jasper Tsang Yok-sing; Cyd Ho Sau-lan of the Labour Party; Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee of the New People Party; Wong Kwok-hing of the Federation of Trade Unions; Dr Kenneth Chan Ka-lok of the Civic Party; Miriam Lau Kin-yee of the Liberal Party; and Avery Ng Man-yuen of the League of Social Democrats. Reporting by Stuart Lau

Updated at 2.16pm

Updated at 10.40am

Lau Kong-wah, a "Super seat" candidate representing the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, told SCMP that the pro-establishment camp might have gained a slight advantage after the government backed down last night from compulsory national education.

"Some voters may feel that the society should not be too radical, and want some rational voice", he said. Lau said he believed the voters on the whole are not likely to cast their ballots based on single issue.

"It is good that the government softened its stance on the matter. We hope they could continue to communicate the matter with the public." He made the comment during an early canvassing activity in a Tsuen Wan wet market on Sunday morning.

Lau said the pro-establishment camp had not communited with Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying on the matter before Leung announced the climb-down at a press conference Saturday evening.   Reporting by Emily Tsang

Chart: Legco 2012 Elections facts