Macao gears up for September elections
As candidates’ names are promulgated, Lo Chun Seng of Macao Victory claims ‘malicious’ forces are at work to shut his List out of the election.
In just over two months, Macao will go to the polls to elect 14 lawmakers to the Legislative Assembly.
The Legislative Assembly Electoral Affairs Commission (CAEAL) has announced the personal details of the 159 candidates fielded by 19 Lists running in the election on 12 September.
Consequently, 11.3 candidates will be vying for each seat, compared to 13.3 in 2017.
The personal details of the 12 candidates of the five electoral Lists running unopposed in the upcoming indirect election were also announced yesterday. The legislature has 12 indirectly-elected seats.
Yesterday’s lists of candidates of the 19 direct election groups and five indirect election groups are preliminary lists. The commission will announce the officially confirmed lists on July 20 at the earliest.
Four years ago, 25 candidacy Lists vied for the 14 seats at stake. In 2017, one of the Lists quit the race before polling day but remained on the ballot papers.
For the upcoming direct election, the 19 direct election lists are: 1) Macao Collective Energy, 2) Alliance for a Happy Home, 3) Progress Promotion Union, 4) Macao Victory, 5) Union for Development, 6) Democratic Prosperous Macao Association, 7) New Macao Progressives, 8) Macao-Guangdong Union, 9) Civic Watch, 10) Power of Synergy, 11) Gaming New Macao, 12) Power of Political Thought, 13) Macao United Citizens Association, 14) New Macao Progressive Association, 15) New Hope, 16) Dialogue Power, 17) Platform for Youngsters, 18) Ou Mun Kong I (“Macao Righteousness”), and 19) Macao Basic Law Promotion Alliance.
The first-ranked candidate of the Macao Victory List, Lo Chun Seng, has announced that one candidate of his List has “resolutely” decided to withdraw from the election due to opposition from family members. Lo said that the number of candidates of his List has now been reduced to four, which is the minimum number of candidates for a direct election List.
Lo added that one more candidate of his List told him that he wanted to withdraw from the election due to “pressure from someone”. Lo noted that his List would be disqualified from taking part in the election if one more candidate withdraws.
Lo said that he suspected that the matter was due to “malicious” forces aiming to force his List to withdraw from the election. Lo said that if one more candidate of his List decides to withdraw, he will report the matter to the police asking for an investigation into the “forces behind”.
CAEAL has confirmed there will be 36 polling stations for the upcoming elections, The Macau Post Daily reported.
This time, the electoral roll comprises 325,180 voters, an increase of 18,160 (+5.9 per cent) from 2017, according to official statistics.
The 33-member Legislative Assembly (AL) comprises 14 deputies directly elected by universal suffrage, 12 deputies indirectly elected by association representatives and seven deputies appointed by the chief executive after the direct and indirect elections. Macao’s legislative elections are held in line with the proportional representation system.
The legislature’s 12 indirectly-elected seats comprise four seats representing the city’s industrial, commercial and financial sector, three seats from the professional sector, two seats from the labour sector, two seats from the cultural and sports sector, and one seat from the social services and educational sector.
For each of the five indirect election sectors, only one electoral list will take part in the upcoming indirect legislative election, meaning that all the 12 candidates are set to be elected uncontested.
Four years ago, the 25 direct election lists had 191 candidates. As one of the 25 lists quit the race before polling day, 186 candidates from 24 lists competed for the 14 directly-elected seats in the 2017 election.