Sunday, 8 November 2015

Rallying Voters

The DAB rally supporters to vote in the upcoming local elections
I received my voter registration card the other day -- we have the District Council Ordinary Election on November 22!

While the elections in the United States are hyped two years in advance, and in Canada as soon as it is called by the Prime Minister, here there isn't much awareness for it save for hearing candidates on bullhorns giving speeches on street corners to anyone who will listen.

However, this morning on the way to Kennedy Town Swimming Pool, I walked through Belcher's Bay Park and heard clapping and then eventually saw the crowd in an amphitheatre area.

It turns out the DAB or Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, a strong pro-Beijing party, had taken over the area in a rally for its candidates.

One of them is the incumbent for my constituency, Kennedy Town and Mount Davis, is Chan Hok-fung, 39, who is running for re-election this year.

His two challengers are 21-year-old Sin Cheuk-nam of The Democratic Party, and probably the youngest candidate to run in an election. The other is Chow Sai-kit, 23, with a new party called Youngspiration, that was formed after the Occupy Movement in a tactic to try to make a difference in the political level.

Interestingly Kennedy Town is known as a DAB stronghold (maybe because of the large elderly population?!) so the chances of Chan being re-elected are very high.

But as Kennedy Town gentrifies, and more younger people moving in, perhaps it'll be more interesting to see how the voter population develops in the next few years.

Many senior voters who traditionally vote DAB may be annoyed with them for bungling the electoral reform vote back in June, when a number of them walked out just as the vote on the package was taking place; as a result the government-proposed package was soundly defeated.

So many political parties have sprouted since the Umbrella Movement that while it's great to see so many young people keen on doing their civic duty, they will be splitting the vote... did they not consider that?

Nevertheless it will be interesting to see what happens come election day -- it will be a barometer to measure people's opinions on where they want politics to go in Hong Kong -- do they want more of the same or shake up the establishment?

November 22 -- get out to vote!

1 comment:

  1. I was looking forward to exercise my vote on November 22 but just got a Notice of Uncontested Election for my district. Seems there was only one validly nominated candidate for my constituency! Worse, he's part of the pro-Beijing camp. :S