Editorial by People’s Daily
The election of the sixth-term Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) was held on May 8. John Lee Ka-chiu won the election with an overwhelming vote.
This is the first CE election held after improving Hong Kong’s electoral system, symbolising a new and vivid practice of the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong.”
The election helps Hong Kong consolidate its achievements in ending chaos and resuming stability, realize good governance, and maintain long-term and stable implementation of the “one country, two systems” framework. It is of great significance for safeguarding the long-term prosperity and stability of the HKSAR.
The election was conducted in strict accordance with the Basic Law of the HKSAR, relevant decisions of the National People’s Congress and its standing committee, and relevant electoral laws of the HKSAR. The election process, which was law- and rule-based, was open, fair, and orderly.
So far, the first elections of Hong Kong’s Electoral Affairs Commission, Legislative Council and sixth-term CE since the improvement to the HKSAR’s electoral system have all been successfully conducted. They mark the comprehensive implementation of the HKSAR’s new electoral system and demonstrate a new image of the special administrative region’s democratic practice.
Some anti-China agitators once wormed their way in the HKSAR’s governance structure through elections. They made every effort to disturb and undermine the governance of Hong Kong and sabotaged the political order of the special administrative region.
Last year, the central government of China improved the HKSAR’s electoral system in accordance with the law, institutionalizing the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong.” It is a prerequisite for governing Hong Kong by law and keeping the region on the right track – itself essential for safeguarding national security and the constitutional order, and as a foundation for sound progress in steering Hong Kong towards democracy. It also demonstrates the central government’s sense of responsibility to uphold and improve the “one country, two systems” framework. and safeguard the long-term prosperity and stability of the HKSAR.
According to the new electoral system, the membership of the Electoral Affairs Commission increased from 1,200 to 1,500 and the number of sectors increased from four to five. The restructured Electoral Affairs Commission has a wider social basis. It is more representative, with more balanced participation by all sectors of society. Under the new nomination mechanism, the CE is recognized by all sectors of the Electoral Affairs Commission, and his election manifesto and governance would better balance the interests of all parties.
The sixth-term CE election fully demonstrates the progressiveness and advantages of the new electoral system.
Lee, while running in the election as a candidate, has visited large numbers of social groups and citizens to solicit opinions and better his manifesto. All sectors of the Hong Kong society paid close attention to the election and took active parts in it. Over 100 youth groups made suggestions to the development of Hong Kong, which mirrored the expectation of the young Hong Kong residents for the new administration.
The formation of candidates’ manifestos was a process of the Hong Kong society’s democratic consultation, and the published versions represent a result of social participation, as well as Hong Kong citizen’s expectation for the future of the special administrative region.
The new electoral system selects the capable and has opened new horizons. The sixth-term CE election fully indicates that the improved electoral system comprehensively implements the “one China, two systems” and the Basic Law of the HKSAR, conforms to the actual conditions in Hong Kong, and protects the general interests of the Hong Kong society and those of each sector. It proves that Hong Kong’s democratic system has gone through institutional improvement and is advancing with the times.
The Hong Kong society believes that the new electoral system has made elections more rational, fairer and more orderly. It attaches more importance on livelihood and development, and focuses more on the capability of the candidates. It selects patriots with governance capabilities, guardians of the “one China, two systems” framework, advocators for good governance and promoters that integrate Hong Kong into China’s overall development. The new electoral system represents the true essence of elections, and seeks welfare and benefits for Hong Kong citizens.
Reality has proved and will continue to prove that the improved electoral system of the HKSAR is a great system.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to the motherland. It is believed that the HKSAR will definitely pool the strength of all sectors to promote coordinated economic, political, social and cultural development and usher in a brighter future, as long as it implements the governance strategies of General Secretary Xi Jinping of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the CPC Central Committee, as well as the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong.” The “one China, two systems” policy is surely to achieve greater success in the future.