The 1,500-member panel that picks Hong Kong’s next leader will have only one opposition-leaning member, according to results Sept. 20 from a tightly controlled selection process amid a crackdown on dissent in the city.
On Sept. 19, select Hong Kong residents voted for members of the Election Committee, which will choose the city’s leader and nearly half of the legislature in the first polls following reforms aimed at ensuring that candidates are loyal to Beijing.
The Election Committee will select 40 of 90 lawmakers in the city’s legislature during elections in December, as well as elect Hong Kong’s leader during voting in March next year.
In May, the legislature amended Hong Kong’s electoral laws to ensure that only “patriots” — people who are loyal to China and the semi-autonomous territory — will rule the city.
The restructured electoral process guarantees a vast majority of the Elections Committee will be largely pro-Beijing candidates, who are likely to choose a chief executive and lawmakers who are aligned with the ruling Chinese Communist Party.
The changes are part of a broad crackdown on Hong Kong civil society following mass pro-democracy protests in 2019. (AP)