The Government will publish the Voting by Imprisoned Persons Bill in the Gazette on April 30.
The bill aims to remove the existing disqualification of prisoners and persons convicted of election-related or bribery offences from being registered as electors and from voting under the Legislative Council Ordinance (Cap. 542). It also provides for similar amendments to the relevant disqualification provisions under the Chief Executive Election Ordinance (Cap. 569), the District Councils Ordinance (Cap. 547) and the Village Representative Election Ordinance (Cap. 576).
“We hope that the bill can be enacted within the 2008/09 legislative session. Separately, the Electoral Affairs Commission together with the relevant law enforcement agencies are working out the practical voting arrangements for prisoners, remanded unconvicted persons and detainees and will prepare amendments to the relevant electoral regulations,”a spokesman for the Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau said.
“The relevant legislative amendments ensure that prisoners’ voting right will be implemented under a consistent and integral legal framework with appropriate polling and security arrangements.”
The bill will be introduced into the Legislative Council on May 6.
Ends/Tuesday, April 28, 2009