The Kowloon West by-election may be held in six months after ousted lawmaker Lau Siu-lai said she would no longer appeal the High Court’s decision to disqualify her from the Legislative Council, the Election Affairs Commission said.
However, Justice Barnabas Fung Wah, the commission’s chairman, said there is no definite schedule yet because of the difficulty of reserving venues for polling stations, which could pose an obstacle to meeting the six-month timeframe.
Lau was one of the six legislators who had been disqualified for invalid oath-taking. By-elections had been held for four of their seats.
In the case of Leung Kwok-hung, who is still appealing his disqualification, Fung said preparations for the by-election will have wait until the legal process is finished.
Asked if Leung could run even though he had expressed opposition to the one-party rule in China, Fung said it is not for the EAC but the returning officers to review candidacies.
Earlier, some members of the pro-Beijing camp had insisted that those who oppose the Communist Party of China are violating the constitution and therefore disqualified from running in elections.
Meanwhile, Lau has pledged to help in the campaign of the pan-democrats’ candidate in the by-election. She also said pan-democrats have agreed to support anyone that she will endorse.
At the same time, Lau has not ruled out the possibility that she will again run for the seat, adding that everything will depend on the consensus arrived at by the pan-democrats.
Former secretary for food and health Ko Wing-man said he still undecided on whether or not he will run in the by-election, considering that he is devoting much of his time in his clinic.
He said he will make an announcement once he has made a decision.
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