Agnes Chow counsel challenges returning officer's right to reject candidate

Local | 17 Jun 2019 12:24 pm

The hearing of the election petition filed by pro-democracy activist Agnes Chow Ting seeking to challenge an official's decision to bar her from running in the Hong Kong Island by-election last year began at the High Court this morning.

The Demosisto party member was disqualified by the constituency's returning officer Anne Teng Yu-Yan in January 2018, because of the party’s advocacy for self-determination for Hong Kong residents.

Chow's lawyer, Paul Shieh Wing-tai, SC, questioned that Teng had no right to refuse the confirmation form signed by candidates and disqualify them without giving them the opportunity to respond.

If the officer has a right to disqualify Chow based on Demosisto's ideology, there would be chilling effect, Shieh told the court.

The by-election in March last year was won by Au Nok-hin – the candidate put up by the pro-democracy camp to replace Chow following her disqualification.

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