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Transcript of SCA's briefing after meeting LegCo members-designate

Following is the transcript (English portion) of a standup briefing given by the Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Stephen Lam, at Central Government Offices this (September 15):

Reporter: (inaudible).

SCA: I had the opportunity today to meet with a number of members-designate of the Legislative Council. I thanked them for taking the initiative to relay to us various specific cases of complaints about irregularities on the day of election, and I undertook that these cases would be reflected immediately to the Registration and Electoral Office for follow up. This, my colleagues have already done immediately after the meeting.

Members of the delegation whom I met today also suggested that the Chief Executive should consider appointing an independent panel of inquiry to follow up these specific cases of complaints relating to the Legislative Council election held on Sunday. I undertook to them that I would relay their message and proposal to the Chief Executive for consideration.

There were members-designate who also suggested that they would not wish the Legislative Council to pursue this particular inquiry on their own, as members elected all have a vested interest in the matter.

Also, I presume that you all have noted from this morning's media session that the Chairman of the Electoral Affairs Commission is pursuing these specific complaints according to current legislation and that he has undertook to file a report on the September 12 election to the Chief Executive as soon as possible.

Reporter: Some voters complained that they could not vote because someone had voted on their behalf. .......aware of this?

SCA: These cases occurred from time to time in elections in the past. There is a standing practice for presiding officers to deal with these cases and where necessary, individual voters can file either a complaint to the Electoral Affairs Commission or make an election petition.

Reporter: ......... harm to actually vote on other people behalf? Are Police involved in this case? Do you think it will hurt Hong Kong's image as a fair and credible city?

SCA: I can assure you that the Electoral Affairs Commission, the Independent Commission Against Corruption, and the Police Force are all very vigilantly taking action on all cases reported to them, including cases of false identity (if there are any such cases put forth to them for follow up).

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Wednesday, September 15, 2004