Proposed guidelines for Legislative Council Election released for public consultation (with photos)

The following is issued on behalf of the Electoral Affairs Commission:

     The Electoral Affairs Commission today (March 28) released for public consultation the proposed guidelines on election-related activities in respect of the Legislative Council (LegCo) Election.

     Speaking at a press conference today, Commission Chairman Mr Justice Barnabas Fung Wah said, "The public consultation period for the proposed guidelines will last for 30 days from today until April 26.

     "The proposed guidelines were drawn up by the Commission for the LegCo Election, which will be held in September. They are prepared on the basis of the existing guidelines for the LegCo Election, with suitable alterations mainly to reflect the latest amendments in the relevant electoral legislation," Mr Justice Fung said.

     "The Electoral Legislation (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2012 is now under scrutiny by the LegCo. Subject to the enactment of the relevant legislative amendments, the proposed changes will be incorporated in the final guidelines," he said.

     "Some chapters in the proposed guidelines are amended to align with the guidelines for the District Council Election, Election Committee Subsector Elections and the Chief Executive Election published last year."

     One of the major amendments of the proposed guidelines is to update the number of seats in the geographical constituencies and functional constituencies in order to reflect the legislative amendments. The fifth term of the LegCo will be composed of 70 members, with 35 seats each for the geographical constituencies and the functional constituencies.

     Five LegCo members will be returned from the new District Council (second) functional constituency in the LegCo Election in September. To reflect this amendment, the proposed guidelines set out the arrangements for the new functional constituency, including voter registration, nomination, polling and counting procedures, and the election expense limit for each list of candidates.

     In light of the proposed legislative amendments, the proposed guidelines also set out the relaxed requirements governing the publication of election advertisements to cater for the increasing use of the Internet to conduct electioneering activities. Under the revised regime, a candidate can post information pertaining to an election advertisement as required by the law, such as a copy of the election advertisement and the permission or authorisation for display of election advertisements, onto an open platform of the Internet, either maintained by the Registration and Electoral Office (i.e. the Central Platform), or by the candidate himself or a person authorised by him (i.e. the Candidate's Platform), for public inspection within one working day following the publication of the election advertisement. As an alternative, the candidate can follow the existing practice of submitting two hard copies of the election advertisement to the Returning Officer.

     The revised arrangements for obtaining consent of support are also covered in the proposed guidelines. A candidate is not required to obtain written consent from those who provide support in his election advertisement if such support is provided by supporters purely out of their own volition and the candidate concerned has not so requested or directed. Implementation will be subject to the passage of the proposed legislative amendments in LegCo.

     The proposed guidelines also set out the revised arrangements when posting joint election mails to electors free of postage.

     In addition, the proposed guidelines remind candidates and their election agents to strictly follow the guidelines on personal data privacy in respect of electioneering activities prepared by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data.

     The proposed guidelines can be downloaded from the Commission website ( They are also available at the Registration and Electoral Office and the Public Enquiry Service Centres of District Offices.

     Written representations can be sent to the Commission's Secretariat by post to 10/F, Harbour Centre, 25 Harbour Road, Wan Chai; by fax to 2511 1682; or by email to before the deadline. Late submissions will not be considered.

     A public forum will be held from 7pm to 8.30pm on April 20 at Leighton Hill Community Hall, 133 Wong Nai Chung Road, Happy Valley. Members of the public are invited to attend to express their views.

     For enquiries, please call 2891 1001.

Ends/Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Issued at HKT 20:04