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Legislative Council elections 2016

Democratic Party lines up young guns to fight Hong Kong Legco elections

Amid growing competition, party is understood to be fielding only one list of runners in each constituency

PUBLISHED : Monday, 18 April, 2016, 7:01am
UPDATED : Monday, 18 April, 2016, 7:01am

The Democratic Party put forward a list of recommended aspirants for the Legislative Council elections over the weekend and will field only one list of candidates in each of the five geographical constituencies, the Post has learnt.

It is understood that Central and Western district councillor Ted Hui Chi-fung, 33, might succeed outgoing lawmaker Sin Chung-kai, 55, to run in Hong Kong Island, while party vice-chairman Andrew Wan Siu-kin, 46, and chief executive officer Lam Cheuk-ting, 38, look set to contest in New Territories West and East respectively.

Incumbent lawmakers Helena Wong Pik-wan, 57, representing Kowloon West, and Wu Chi-wai, 53, of Kowloon East, are considering seeking re-election in September.

Yuen Long district councillor Roy Kwong Chun-yu, 32, would succeed outgoing lawmaker Albert Ho Chun-yan, 64, in contesting the “super seat”, where candidates must be district councillors and nominated by 15 other council members to enter the citywide elections.

James To Kun-sun, 52, an incumbent “super seat” lawmaker, is considering another term.

The recommended list would be discussed and endorsed by the party’s central committee this Thursday and be voted on by all members at a general meeting on Sunday.

The party’s decision to field only one list in each geographical constituency is regarded as its safest bet amid the emergence of several groups and parties led by young people advocating independence or the city’s right to self-determination after 2047, when the “one country, two systems” principle expires.

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In an internal meeting last December, some members, including former Tuen Mun district councillor Josephine Chan Shu-ying, suggested fielding two lists in both New Territories East and West as they believed the Democrats could win enough votes to return two candidates, but the idea was dismissed by many as too risky.

Groups such as the Hong Kong National Party, Demosisto and Youngspiration have already hinted they will contest the polls, and it is understood that another new group – to be led by Lester Shum and Alex Chow Yong-kang, former student leaders who co-led the Occupy sit-ins in 2014 – would be founded in weeks with details of election plans.

Chinese University political scientist Dr Ma Ngok has said that no pro-democracy party in Hong Kong right now had the ability to win more than one seat in each constituency under such fierce competition.

“The pro-democracy candidates might also risk losing the seat amid the infighting,” he added.