Hong Kong marks the beginning of the new democratic movement
with half a million votes
The total number of votes cast for the 5 Civic Party and League of Social Democrats candidates as well as the 5 Tertiary 2012 candidates totaled 500,787. Each vote represented a clear determination in support of the issue “Implementation of Universal Suffrage and Abolition of Functional Constituencies without Delay”. We are deeply grateful for and encouraged by their votes.
When we first launched the 5 district referendum movement we were looking forward to a contest with the pro-establishment camp. We announced that we would consider the movement a success if the total number of votes cast for the 5 pan democratic candidates exceeded the votes achieved by the most successful non pan democratic candidate in each of the 5 districts. We also set a target of 50% turn out rate.
Whilst the votes for our 5 candidates have vastly exceeded the votes achieved by the other candidates in all 5 districts, the voter turnout rate achieved was 17.1%. Despite the boycott and the suppression from the authorities, this is the largest scale democratic movement since 1st July 2003 and the government must respond to the demand of the half a million people who has voted in favour of the clear issue – abolition of functional constituencies.
The objective of this new democratic movement is to encourage Hong Kong people to have a direct say in their own destiny, particularly when constitutional reform has a direct impact on people’s livelihood and is a solemn promise in our Basic Law. We are moved by the civil society participation in this movement. Many made their own videos, wrote articles, created banners and labels in support of the movement. The role of the young people in particular the Tertiary 2012 group showed that impatience for the pace of democracy will continue to grow. This movement is above party lines and we would like to thank all those who contributed to the movement. It has sown the seeds for the new democratic movement and we believe this will grow and gather strength. It is indeed a new beginning.
The movement has deepened the public’s awareness of the injustice in the FC system — the greatest obstacle to universal suffrage. In the days to come we will work with the democrats in the legislature as well as civil society to fight for real universal suffrage and abolition of FC.