The 2020 Legislative Council ("LegCo") General Election will be held in the third quarter of 2020. The Electoral Affairs Commission ("EAC") has drawn up the provisional recommendations on the boundaries and names of the geographical constituencies ("GCs") for the 2020 LegCo General Election. We invite your views on these provisional recommendations.
In accordance with sections 4(a), 18 and 19 of the Electoral Affairs Commission Ordinance (Chapter 541) (“EACO”), the EAC is required to review the existing boundaries of LegCo GCs, draw up provisional recommendations, conduct public consultation, and submit a report to the Chief Executive (“CE”) on its recommendations on the boundaries and names of LegCo GCs at an interval of not more than 36 months from the preceding LegCo general election. As the last LegCo general election was held on 4 September 2016, the EAC has to submit the report on the boundaries and names of GCs for the 2020 LegCo General Election to the CE on or before 3 September 2019.
The EAC has drawn up its provisional recommendations on the boundaries and names of GCs for the 2020 LegCo General Election pursuant to the statutory provisions stipulated under sections 18 and 19 of the Legislative Council Ordinance (Chapter 542) (“LCO”) and the statutory criteria stipulated under section 20 of the EACO as well as the set of established working principles.
According to the LCO, the number of GCs for the purpose of returning Members at the 2020 LegCo General Election is 5, and a total of 35 Members are to be returned, and the number of Members to be returned for each GC is to be not less than 5 nor greater than 9. These requirements are the statutory pre-condition for the EAC, to which the EAC must strictly adhere and has no authority to make any variation.
As different from the single seat set up for each District Council (“DC”) constituency in a DC ordinary election, a multi-seat system is adopted for each GC in a LegCo general election, i.e. the number of seats for each GC is between 5 and 9. According to the EACO, the population in each proposed GC shall not exceed or fall short of the resulting number applicable to that GC by more than 15%, which is the statutory permissible range. According to the law, the resulting number is the population quota multiplied by the number of Members to be returned to each GC, and the population quota is the figure arrived at by dividing the total population of Hong Kong by the total number of Members to be returned for all GCs.
In respect of the delineation of GC boundaries, it is the EAC’s working principle that the existing boundaries of the 5 GCs should form the basis of consideration, and for those existing GCs where the population falls within the statutory permissible range of the population quota requirement, their boundaries will as far as possible be adopted to form new GCs. According to the above working principle and based on the latest projected population figures, the EAC has allocated the 35 seats to the existing 5 GCs by using the established two-step calculation method. Having strictly adhered to the statutory requirement on the number of Members to be returned for each GC (i.e. a number not less than 5 nor greater than 9), the calculation result was that the percentage deviations of the population from the resulting number for the existing 5 GCs are all within the statutory permissible range. Therefore, adjustment to their existing boundaries will not be necessary in principle.
Notwithstanding that, the EAC has also examined other options for adjusting the existing GC boundaries. Some options will yield a smaller percentage deviation of population from the resulting number for individual GCs than that adopting the existing 5 GC boundaries. However, these options will either split up the Lantau Island into two different GCs or involve the transfer of an administrative district in the New Territories to the Hong Kong Island GC or GC in Kowloon, deviating from the EAC’s working principle, i.e. Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and the New Territories are to be treated separately as far as possible having regard to the statutory criteria under the EACO. Furthermore, all along, for those GCs or DC constituencies which do fall within the statutory permissible range, the EAC will not proactively adjust their boundaries. According to the experience in past delineation exercises, especially the delineation of constituencies for the 2019 DC Ordinary Election, the public has prevalently advocated maintenance of the status quo of DC constituency boundaries as far as possible, and that the boundaries of the existing 5 GCs have been adopted since the first term of LegCo in 1998, the EAC considers that adjusting the existing boundaries simply for the sake of reducing the percentage deviations of the population among the 5 GCs where the population do fall within the statutory permissible range does not accord with the EAC’s working principle, and would alter the accustomed GC boundaries for members of the public. As a result, changes to boundaries are not recommended.
Having carefully weighed the pros and cons, the EAC proposes the adoption of the boundaries of the existing 5 GCs as the GC boundaries for the 2020 LegCo General Election. Seats should be allocated as follows:
The EAC’s provisional recommendations satisfy all the relevant statutory provisions, criteria and established working principles.
Details of the two-step method for allocation of seats and a brief summary of the EAC’s provisional recommendations, including the codes, names and projected populations of the 5 GCs can be viewed at Allocation of Seats for the Proposed GCs and Number of Seats for the Proposed GCs.
In accordance with section 19 of the EACO, the maps showing the boundaries and names of all the proposed GCs under the provisional recommendations and a document containing descriptions of the proposed GC boundaries are enclosed for public consultation lasting 30 days from 8 May 2019 to 6 June 2019 (both dates inclusive). The maps and a document containing descriptions of the proposed GC boundaries are available at this website for on-screen viewing or downloading. Copies of these maps and documents are also available for public inspection during ordinary business / opening hours at Home Affairs Enquiry Centres of all district offices, the Registration and Electoral Office, Philatelic Offices of Hongkong Post, management offices of all public housing estates and all major and district public libraries of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.
Please send in your written representations on the provisional recommendations to the EAC Secretariat by
6 June 2019, the latest through any of the following means:
||No. of seats
|Hong Kong Island
|New Territories West
|New Territories East
||Electoral Affairs Commission Secretariat
10th Floor, Harbour Centre
25 Harbour Road, Wan Chai
Late representations will not be considered.
You may also make oral representations to the EAC at the public forum to be held on 16 May 2019 (Thursday) from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Lai Chi Kok Community Hall, 863 Lai Chi Kok Road, Sham Shui Po, Kowloon.
Members of the public may make oral representations at the public forum. However, due to the limited time, members of the public please send in written representations if they wish to make detailed representations.
The EAC has always made its best endeavours to ensure that all public elections are held in an open, fair and honest manner. The delineation of GCs is an important element of the arrangements for the 2020 LegCo General Election. We therefore encourage members of the public to put forward their views through submission of written representations or attendance at the public forum. To ensure that the final recommendations of the EAC may fully take into account the public opinions, it is wished that members of the public do actively participate in the consultation and express views for or against the provisional recommendations.
All submissions will be treated as open information unless otherwise specified. Views received will be published in their entirety for public perusal. If you wish to keep your name or your views confidential, please indicate so clearly in your submissions.
For enquiries, please contact the EAC Secretariat at 2827 1269.
Electoral Affairs Commission
8 May 2019