Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Legislative Council of Hong Kong
The statue on the LegCo building is a replica of the one erected on the Old Bailey of London. It is the goddess of justice, Themis. It was a left-over from the former Supreme Court.
In the 2004 election, 30 members were directly elected by universal suffrage from geographical constituencies (GC) and 30 were elected from functional constituencies. In the previous election in 2000, 24 were directly elected, 6 elected from a 800-member electoral college called the Election Committee of Hong Kong, and 30 elected from functional constituencies. The method of election after 2007 has not been specified. The Basic Law states that the ultimate aim is the election of all the Legco members by universal suffrage (Article 68 of the Basic Law of Hong Kong ).
Private members' bills and motions have to be passed by majorities in both chambers of the legislature - members returned from geographical constituencies and election committee, and members returned from functional constituencies. This arrangement, however, is not necessary for government bills, with only a simple majority required to secure passage. Meanwhile, amendments to the Basic Law require a two-thirds vote in LegCo for passage, but without a specific requirement in each chamber. After passing LegCo, the amendment must be approved by a supermajority of the same size among Hong Kong's delegates to the National People's Congress, and also the approval of the Chief Executive (since veto power is given to him).(Article 159, Basic Law)
The GC seats are returned by universal suffrage. The voting system adopted in these electoral districts is a system of party-list proportional Representation (PR), with seats allocated by the largest remainder method using the Hare quota as the quota for election. The system is widely considered to give representative legislatures. There were 3.06 million registered voters.
|Geographical Constituency||No. of Seats|
|Hong Kong Island||5||6|
|New Territories East||5||7|
|New Territories West||6||8|
(Compare with 'business votes' in the City of London)
There are 28 functional constituencies (FC) represented in LegCo, representing various sectors of the community which were considered playing a crucial role in the development of Hong Kong.
In the 2000 election, 27 of the FCs returned 1 member, except the Labour functional constituency which returned 3 members, giving a total of 30 FC seats.
- Heung Yee Kuk
- Agriculture and fisheries
- Financial services
- Information technology
- Health services
- Architectural, surveying and planning
- Real estate and construction
- Social welfare
- Commercial (first)
- Commercial (second)
- Industrial (first)
- Industrial (second)
- Import and export
- Wholesale and retail
- Textiles and garment
- Sport, performing arts, culture and publication
- District Council
A simple plurality system was used for 23 of the FCs, in which an eligible voter may cast one vote. The exceptions were Labour FC in which a voter may cast up to three votes, thereby creating a block vote, and the Heung Yee Kuk, Agriculture and Fisheries, Insurance, and Transport FCs where a preferential elimination system was used due to the small number of voters. In the latter a voter must indicate preferences rather than approval/disapproval or a single choice.
10 LegCo members and were returned by the Election Committee (EC) in the 1998 election, and 6 in the 2000 election, in accordance with Annex II of the Basic Law. Now this college of electors is used only to elect the Chief Executive. There are 800 members in the EC, coming from four sectors with 200 members each. (Basic Law, Ann.1, Sect. 2)
- Industrial, commercial and financial sectors
- The professions
- Labour, social services, religious and other sectors
- Members of the LegCo, representatives of district-based organisations, Hong Kong deputies to the National People's Congress (NPC), and representatives of Hong Kong members of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
Most of the 800 EC members were returned by earlier sub-sector elections. The 6 LegCo members were chosen by a "first past the post" system, with each EC member casting a vote to choose exactly 6 candidates among themselves.
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