The disqualified nomination of democratic candidate Agnes Chow in the Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency

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The Electoral Affairs Commission announced on 27th January that Agnes Chow, the Demosistō spokesman and candidate for the 2018 Hong Kong Island By-election, is barred due to the claiming of “democratic self-determination”, described in the notice from the chief officer of Hong Kong Island Geographical Constituency.

The decision is supported by the Government of HKSAR (Hong Kong Special Administrative Region). “Regarding a Returning Officer’s decision that the nomination of a candidate was invalid as she did not comply with section 40(1)(b)(i) of the Legislative Council Ordinance, the HKSAR Government agrees to and supports the decision by the Returning Officer.”, explained in the press release of HKSAR Government, “The candidate cannot possibly comply with the requirements of the relevant electoral laws, since advocating or promoting ‘self-determination’ is contrary to the content of the declaration that the law requires a candidate to make to uphold the Basic Law and pledge allegiance to the HKSAR.”

Agnes Chow, a citizen of Hong Kong with a renounced British citizenship, is the spokesman of the Demosistō and a former member of Sholarism, an organization of students leading the “Umbrella Revolution”. On 13th January 2018, Chow released her candidacy via Facebook, aiming at taking back the seat of Nathan Law, the former lawmaker and the chairman of Demosistō.

Nathon Law, who was sentenced 8 months for his leadership in the Umbrella Revolution and currently released on bail, is the youngest lawmaker of the Legistative Council of Hong Kong. On 12th October 2016, Nanthon Law and the other five elected legislative members (so-called Sixtus), modified their oaths and was therefore unseated by the court unseated by the court on 14th July 2017. “Many people were angry and disappointed over the LegCo oath taking process.”, said CY Leung, the chief executive of Hong Kong.  Their activity was condemned by the HKSAR Goverment, resulting in the by-election in 2018.

On behalf of Chow, Au Nok-hin will become the backup candidate of pro-democracy camp. He will need to face challenges from Judy Chan, a member of pro-Beijing party New People’s Party, and Edward Yum, the former member of People Power.

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