For the first time, Hongkongers who oppose the government’s electoral reform proposal outnumber those who support it, a rolling public opinion poll by three local universities has found, Ming Pao Daily reported Friday.
The survey reported Thursday that 43 percent of respondents said they are opposed to the government’s proposal, a higher proportion than the 41.7 percent who expressed support for it.
In the latest poll, done by the University of Hong Kong, the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) and Hong Kong Polytechnic University from June 3 to 7, 1,115 people were interviewed.
Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, who is in Chicago, said there are several public opinion polls being run and their results differ, as the questions being asked are different.
Leung said the government, citizens and legislative councilors could use the results and trends of these surveys as a reference.
He dismissed speculation circulating since Thursday that the central government would offer monetary rewards of up to HK$300 million (US$38.7 million) to entice legislators from the pan-democratic camp to support the government.
Liberal Party lawmaker James Tien Pei-chun said while he was disappointed by the outcomes of some of the surveys, the party’s five votes in the Legislative Council would be in favor of the government’s proposal.
Labour Party chairman Lee Cheuk-yan said he was not surprised by the outcome of the latest survey and expected more people to decide not to support the electoral reform bill.
Meanwhile, the Our Hong Kong Foundation, led by former chief executive Tung Chee-hwa, said a survey it commissioned the Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies at CUHK to run showed 49.4 percent of people support the passing by legislators of the universal suffrage plan put forward by the government, while 39.5 percent said the bill should be voted down.
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