tirsdag 21. desember 2021

Hongkongers snub ‘patriots’ election with lowest turnout in three decades

Hongkongers have snubbed a legislature poll taking place under new “patriots only” rules imposed by China, with the lowest turnout since residents started electing lawmakers three decades ago, according to official figures released on Monday. Only 30%, or 1,350,680 of the 4,472,863 registered voters, cast their ballots for city lawmakers in Sunday’s election, Hong Kong’s top election official, Barnabas Fung, told reporters.

The latest results showed almost all of the seats being taken by pro-Beijing and pro-establishment candidates. Some of those candidates cheered on stage at the central vote-counting centre and chanted “guaranteed win”. Results were still pending in some seats.

The polls, in which 153 candidates competed for 90 seats, were the first to be held since Beijing overhauled the city’s electoral processes earlier this year, reducing the ratio of directly elected seats and introducing a two-tiered candidate-vetting process by national security police and officials to ensure only “patriots” could administer the city.