Five thousand and one voters cast their ballot in the election to determine the Electoral Committee for the Chief Executive Election, reported the Electoral Affairs Commission President, Song Man Lei, at a post-election press conference yesterday, representing about 87% of the 5,735 eligible to vote.
The 5,000 or so voters decided only that six possible representatives would not join the 344 others on the Electoral Committee, the body tasked with supporting the nominations of potential Chief Executive contenders, as well as voting to decide who will take the Macau SAR’s top post.
The voting process yesterday was held to allow the 569 designated associations to cast their votes, so that the Electoral Affairs Commission, which oversees the election, can filter 344 electors from the 350 possible representatives.
With the exception of the education and labor sectors, all other sectors fielded the same number of candidates as the seats they control and so there was no competition.
The six candidates to not win a seat on the Commission were Lei Kit U and Leong Cheng Ha from the education sector, and Lam Cheong U, Wong Hon Fai, Rita Botelho dos Santos, and Tang Sio Fong from the labor sector. No other candidates lost their seats.
The audited results are to due be released today at 10 a.m.
Yesterday’s vote was beset by several problems and unexpected interruptions, reported Song during the press conference.
One voter was spotted yesterday taking photos with a mobile phone in the voting booth. The polling station concerned is the Macau Polytechnic Institute Sport Complex, which was designated for the business and finance sectors. The Commission reported the case to the police, but neither it nor the police have provided further details to date.
As in the Legislative Assembly election, voters are forbidden by law to use any kind of communication device once inside poll stations. Videography and photography are prohibited and can incur criminal prosecution.
Moreover, President Song noted at the press conference that it is illegal for any election-related promotion to take place within 100 meters of any polling stations.
Meanwhile, journalists were also legally prohibited from questioning voters within 100 meters of a polling station about the election.
Song said that there was a complaint received by the polling station at the Escola Luso-Chinesa Técnico-Profissional about the noise from a nearby political assembly organized by lawmaker Sulu Sou and the New Macau Association.
Another hiccough at the same polling station yesterday was a power outage, which obstructed the voting process temporarily before the Commission managed to fix it.
TDM’s Radio Macau claimed yesterday on its Portuguese channel that the Chief Executive Election date had been set to August 25. At yesterday’s press conference, a reporter from the broadcaster asked President Song to validate that report.
In response, Song dismissed the claim, adding that the Commission had not yet received any specific date, which is to be deemed by the incumbent Chief Executive, Chui Sai On.
According to the Basic Law, the Chief Executive is to be elected by a “widely representative Election Committee,” which in this election consists 400 electors from the business sector, the cultural, education, and professional sectors, the labor, social service, and religion sectors, as well as the law-making bodies and consultative bodies in both Macau and Beijing.
As the Election Committee is made up of people from various sectors, organizations meeting certain requirements set forth in the law can nominate their respective representatives for the Election Committee.
The legal requirement for an elector is an individual – or “natural person” – who can only represent one entity, or “legal person.” Staff reporters