Two-day primary elections of democrat and localist candidates running in the 2020 Legislative Council Election started at noon today (July 11). The weekend primaries have been carried out despite the police force’s sabotages and Carrie Lam’s intimidations during the weekdays.
The primary elections, coordinated by 2014 Occupy protests co-founder Benny Tai and former lawmaker Au Nok-hin, aim at ensuring taking the majority seats in the LegCo in Hong Kong by probing the public opinion on the democratic candidates and localist political neophytes.
The winners in the primary elections, no matter he/she associates with the democrat camp and localist camp, will be promoted as the top candidates to compete with pro-Beijing candidates in the upcoming LegCo election in September.
Narrowing the final list of democrats and localists for the official election in September is the only hope for the citizens to oust some unpopular ill-performed Pro-Beijing lawmakers. The current polling mechanism has been deliberately designed to favor the Chinese Communist Party’s proxies to win the majority in the legislature without difficulty.
However, Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, said the primaries were “illegal” on Thursday.
But citizens turned a deaf ear to Lam’s words. On Saturday afternoon, citizens, young and old, flocked to the polling stations to cast their votes, unintimidated by the government’s warning of the crackdown and sweeping national security legislation imposed by Beijing earlier this month. According to the local newspaper “The Standard”, more than 137,000 have voted within the first six hours of the polling. It is said the organizers expected 170,000 voters in the primaries.
Again, Hongkongers demonstrate their resilience and intelligence to resist the tyranny under the CCP regime. Citizens queued long lines quietly, and volunteers walked back and forth to offer supports and guidance. Some localist candidates made the “sensitive words” of their election manifesto invisible on the flyers to avoid the offense of National Security Law. The organizer said, “Hongkongers need to act, and we need to be heard, to prompt our candidates to act rationally, and fight for capturing 35+ seats in the Legco together.”
On Friday evening, police raided the offices of Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute (PORI) and took away their computers. The police said they had a warrant and accused the organization of dishonest use of a computer, but the public believed the police meant to sabotage the primaries organized by PORI.
Saturday’s election commencement time was delayed for three hours as organizers sought to upgrade security in light of the raid.