Radical activists beat out the old guard

Top News | Michael Shum 14 Jul 2020

Radical activists, including former student leader Joshua Wong Chi-fung beat out traditional pan-democrats in the camp's primaries, with activist and incumbent lawmaker Eddie Chu Hoi-dick also assured of his candidacy.

Old guards like Helena Wong Pik-wan, "Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung and Gary Fan Kwok-wai will be booted out, according to preliminary results of the primaries which saw more than 610,000 people cast votes.

Organizers announced the preliminary results of electronic votes last night, before the counting paper ballots was complete.

Wong and Chu promoted themselves in the primaries together as radicals and other activists allied with the pair also ranked highly within their constituencies.

Former journalist Gwyneth Ho Kwai-lam also ranked first in New Territories East, beating Civic Party lawmaker Alvin Yeung Ngok-kiu. Fellow Civic Party member Jeremy Tam Man-ho came second to Wong, who topped Kowloon East with 34,000 votes and got the second highest number of votes in the geographic constituencies.

Former student leader Sunny Cheung Kwan-yang beat former camp convener Claudia Mo Man-ching in Kowloon West, while district councillors Tiffany Yuen Ka-wai and Lester Shum Ngo-fai also qualified.

Civil Human Rights Front convener Jimmy Sham Tsz-kit ranked first in Kowloon West, while protest organizer Ventus Lau Wing-hong got the second highest number of votes in New Territories East.

Localist district councillors Sam Cheung Ho-sum and Henry Wong Pak-yu - both first-timers - qualified for September's Legislative Council elections.

The Democratic Party's Ted Hui Chi-fung and Roy Kwong Chun-yu, who were both active at protests during the anti-fugitive bill movement, were the exceptions among traditional pan-democrats, gathering the most votes in the Hong Kong Island and the district council "super seats."

But fellow party members Andrew Wan Siu-kin, Lam Cheuk-ting, James To Kun-sun and party chairman Wu Chi-wai barely qualified for the Legco elections.

However, Helena Wong, considered more conservative, ranked seventh among nine candidates in Kowloon West and will most probably be booted out.

Also eliminated was the Labour Party's only candidate, Carol Ng Man-yee, meaning the party might lose their only seat in the legislature.

The Neo Democrats' Gary Fan Kwok-wai would be the backup candidate for New Territories East, while Leung failed to qualify in the same constituency.

On a radio program yesterday, Yeung, the leader of the second biggest pro-democracy party in the legislature, said party members will not run in the official election if they lose in the primaries.

Helena Wong echoed the sentiment, saying she would respect the results and not run in September if she cannot qualify. She said the most important task is to help the camp gain the majority in Legco.

The camp is hoping to grab 35-plus seats of the 70 in the legislature.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor weighed in last night, saying there is no such thing as a primary in Hong Kong's electoral system as it could fall under the national security law's subversion offense.

An organizer of the primaries, Benny Tai Yiu-ting, said it would be "political suicide" if candidates ignore the results of the primary elections and insist on participating in the September elections.

"We surely cannot bar someone from running according to the law but if someone violates the agreement, I think that will be tantamount to committing political suicide," he said.


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