Localist group Civic Passion has announced that six of its members will be running in the upcoming district council elections in November. The group will be up against the Democratic Party in five of the six districts.

Cheng Chung-tai, a teaching fellow at Polytechnic University, will be directly challenging Democratic Party district councillor and lawmaker Albert Ho Chun-yan in the Lok Tsui constituency in Tuen Mun.

At a campaign kickstart event, Cheng said: “It is an important election for Hong Kong people to choose whether they support those who can represent their, and the localists’ voice.”

Civic Passion campaign kickstart event. Photo: Passion Times screen capture.

While localist groups support democracy, they are better known for their anti-communist stance and close association with movements promoting the expansion of Hong Kong’s autonomy and independence.

Ho ‘betrayed’ Hong Kongers
“Tuen Mun residents affected by parallel trading would not agree with Albert Ho and the pan-democrats who have criticised protests, saying they have ‘crossed the line’,” Cheng said.

Cheng said that Ho did had failed to carry out a “pseudo-referendum” on political reform through a by-election by not resigning from the legislature as promised. “He does not deserve to be a pan-democrat councillor anymore.”

He also said that Ho had helped to lower the year limit for new immigrants to apply for government aid and thus betrayed Hong Kong people’s interests.

In response, Albert Ho told Ming Pao that “it doesn’t matter, I won’t pay too much attention to them.” He said that the move would not affect his campaign, but he questioned why Cheng did not choose to run in neighbouring districts where a pro-Beijing district councillor remained uncontested. He said Cheng “did not aim at winning” and was “paving the way” for the pro-Beijing camp.

Former Law Society president Junius Ho Kwan-yiu and former Democratic Party member Yuen Wai-chung have also announced campaigns in the Lok Tsui constituency.

Campaign posters of Albert Ho. Photo: Kris Cheng/HKFP.

Incumbent Democratic Party district councillors Au Nok-hin and Lo Kin-hei of Lei Tung I and Lei Tung II constituencies in Southern District will also be contested.

Timothy Tsoi Man-lung, who will be challenging Au, said that his run was aimed at “exposing how the Democratic Party has betrayed people’s livelihood” including joining two closed door meetings with the China Liaison Office.

Pro-Beijing DAB party members will also be running in the constituencies.

Democratic Party met with China Liaison Office in 2010.

Other constituencies where Civic Passion members will run include Tin Ping West in North District and Tsz Wan West in Wong Tai Sin, where Democratic Party members are running against the incumbent pro-Beijing Federation of Trade Union and DAB party district councilors respectively. Civic Passion candidates will also stand in Un Chau & So Uk in Sham Shui Po, where only one incumbent DAB party councillor is running.

Civic Passion did not opt to join the pan-democratic camp’s coordination mechanism to avoid running against each other.

In the last district council election in 2011, Democratic Party members were targeted by the People Power party for supporting the government’s political reform package in 2010. The Democratic Party rejected the government’s new political reform package in June.

Kris Cheng

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.