An election of the new Election Committee in Hong Kong which has allowed the patriotic candidate only concluded. EC is now responsible for choosing the next leader of the city. It is the first-ever poll since the sweeping of reforms to its electoral system that has been passed. The number of unregistered voters has slashed almost up to 97%.

Critics have early weakened the long voting reforms which were about to remove all opposition from the parliament of the city. The electoral reform law that passed in May had the design to weed out non- patriots. It had also seen EC giving new powerful responsibilities. It allows to nominate all candidates for LegCo, which is the parliament of the city.

This allows for a pro-China panel to elect and vet candidates. According to critics, it had reduced the democratic representation. Only one opposition-leaning candidate has won the election. Tik Chi-yuen told the reporters that there was at least some room for them. Under this law, EC has expanded by 300 members. from 1200 to 1500. But with the number of registered voters, it has up to 97%, which means 7891 people are eligible to vote for them.

Only individuals belonging to unions or businesses or those who are holding other positions of power can vote for the Election Committee. New rules mean that most individual votes replace with organizational votes. It is allowing the unions to cast a vote on behalf of all of their workers.

Critics say that this new voting scheme will allow for few voices to get heard.

“In a democratic election, voters should be able to cast votes themselves, rather than being represented by an organization,” told a former member of the Election Committee, who is now unable to run due to the new “patriotic” reforms.

“The way they expanded the seats on the Election Committee but reduced the voter base, you can see the whole system is manipulated… this gives the impression that the government can do whatever it wants in the future.”

The results for this election based on patriotic reforms came to the surface on Monday morning after a delayed vote count. The former British colony also handed back to China in 1997 under the “one country, two systems” model.

Hong Kong has its mini-constitution and its own elected parliament. But fears say that this model eroded. This has led to huge pro-democracy protests in 2019. Some of the protests have turned into violence in recent years. Beijing has also passed a controversial national security law. It has reduced Hong Kong’s anatomy and made things easier to punish demonstrators.

Credits: BBC

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