Hongkong’s Elections: Beijing backed sole runner elected as Chief Executive

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The former Chief Secretary and Security Secretary, John Lee Ka-Chiu was elected as Hongkong’s Chief Executive in fresh elections on Sunday. He secured 1,416 secret ballot votes of 1,466 members Election Committee. Lee was the sole runner in the election, as the pro-democratic groups had boycotted the election or were outcasted by Legistative Council. Lee is a supporter of controversial China-extradition Bill, and was apparently backed by Chinese Communist Party. He was also earlier sanctioned by US in 2020.

How Hongkong’s executive elect

The Chief Executive Committee nominates the candidate who must obtain a minimum of 188 votes and a minimum of 15 votes from each sector of the committee to be eligible for the nomination, and after that The Candidate Eligibility Review Committee verifies his/her eligibility as a “patriot”. The Eligibility Committee was headed by John Lee last year as chief secretary. The same Chief Executive Committee who nominates the candidate, also votes for the nominated candidate and he/she has to secure more than 750 votes. 

Election after National Security Law

The election was exceptional as it was held after the National Security Laws and the Extradition Bill that caused series of protests in Hongkong by pro-democracy supporters, when the outgoing Chief Executive Carrie Lam was in power. The National Security Law curtails the freedom of speech and freedom of protest which would halt the movement of pro-democracy supporters and now the chief Executive is more controlled by Beijing as the Election Committee has been restructured. The Committee has now expanded from 1,200 to 1,500 members and the one more Sector was added last year in the Committee. The Election Committee is consists of five sectors- business, industry, legislatures, professional and national organizations. However, now the directly elected district councillors have decreased and the professional sectors have more corporate executives than any others profession, who vote in the favor of Pro-China candidate.

Ritik Pal
Ritik Pal
Student of journalism at Delhi School of Journalism, University of Delhi. Strong with pen and fascinating toward International Relations and geopolitics. Though also writes financial news stories.

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