Legislative Council by-election


Hong Kong (HKSAR) - The following is issued on behalf of the Electoral Affairs Commission:

     The Electoral Affairs Commission (EAC) announced today (September 14) that a Legislative Council by-election is planned to be held on March 11 (Sunday) next year.

     "This by-election will be held to fill four vacant seats of the Legislative Council, including the vacancies for the three geographical constituencies (Hong Kong Island, Kowloon West and New Territories East); and the vacancy for the Architectural, Surveying, Planning and Landscape functional constituency," a Commission's spokesman said.

     "The current number of staff available to the Registration and Electoral Office (REO) is inadequate to hold a by-election of such scale. As such, there is a need for recruitment and training of additional electoral staff as soon as possible, and the recruitment and training process will take time.

     In the meantime the REO, as required by law, has to hold the by-election for the Peak Constituency and the Tung Wah Constituency of the Central and Western District Council, where vacancies have arisen in the offices of members. The by-election will be held later this year.

The preparatory period for the by-election of the two constituencies of the Central and Western District Council overlaps with that of the Legislative Council by-election."

     The EAC spokesman added that when deciding the polling date of the Legislative Council by-election, in addition to manpower resources, various objective factors have to be considered including the procurement of venues for use as polling and counting stations, procurement and logistics for electoral materials and the principle of proper use of public funds. Furthermore, public holidays during this period such as the Lunar New Year holidays would also have an impact on major electoral arrangements and further limit polling day options. Therefore, in the light of various underlying practical considerations, preparation for holding the Legislative Council by-election will take about six months.

     To ensure that sufficient resources can be dedicated to the preparation of the by-election for the Legislative Council, and taking into account the by-election for the Central and Western District Council, the EAC is planning to hold the Legislative Council by-election on March 11, 2018.

     "In accordance with the electoral laws, the nomination period of the Legislative Council by-election must not be less than 14 days or more than 21 days.

It must end not less than 28 days and not more than 42 days before the polling day. Upon preparation of the necessary nomination procedure, the notice of the by-election and the nomination period will be published in the Government Gazette as soon as possible," the spokesman added.

     The EAC shall take the appropriate steps and make reasonable arrangements in order to ensure that the by-election will be conducted in an open, fair and honest manner.



Published on: 2017-09-14

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