Hong Kong’s chief executive election is held every five years.
Under the city’s electoral system, only members of a select Election Committee can vote for the chief executive.
The committee has grown from 400 members during the first CE election in December 1996 to 1,200 at present. (The actual number of electors is 1,194 this year because some members represent more than one interest group on the committee).
Members of the committee come from various interest groups including Hong Kong deputies to the National People’s Congress and members of the Legislative Council.
Business tycoons with big investments in mainland China are heavily represented on the committee, as are pro-Beijing politicians and labor leaders.
For this election, more than 300 of the committee members belong to the pro-democracy camp.
To be able to become an official candidate in the CE race, one needs to garner the support of at least 150 members of the Election Committee.
Three aspirants have qualified for the leadership contest, namely former chief secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, former financial secretary John Tsang Chun-wah and retired judge Woo Kwok-hing.
Legislator Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee, a former security secretary, tried for the second time to join the race but failed again to get enough backing to qualify for the nomination.
According to the Chief Executive Election Ordinance, a candidate must obtain more than 600 valid votes to be declared winner of the election.
In case no candidate is able to garner the required number of votes in the first round of polling, only the two candidates obtaining the highest number of votes can enter the second round.
The first round of polling will be held between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. today.
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