Languages
Page last updated at 04:52 GMT, Monday, 21 September 2009 05:52 UK

Democrats in small gain in Macau

Chinese flag at Macau's St Paul's Cathedral, May 08
Macau has proved more pliant to Chinese requests than Hong Kong

Legislative elections in Macau attracted a higher turnout than usual and strengthened the democratic minority, early results have shown.

The tiny gambling hub, ruled by China, can choose only 12 out of 29 seats.

Election officials have said a large number of apparently spoiled ballots had been cast, and were delaying the announcement of final results.

Concern has been rising about the extent of corruption among officials overseeing Macau's huge casino boom.

Margins

Initial results published on Monday showed Macau's pro-democracy camp winning three of the 12 directly elected seats - one more than in the previous poll.

Some analysts said that this increase, though marginal, symbolised a popular desire for more say in public affairs, especially when the 60% turnout was taken into account.

"We hope [Beijing] will now pave the road for [full] democracy," Antonio Ng, a democratic lawmaker, told reporters as he celebrated his re-election.

He said results showed that one in five people in the China-ruled territory had voted for democratic candidates.

The grandfather of Macau's casino, transport and investment worlds, Stanley Ho, is ailing and observers have started wondering about succession at his far-reaching businesses.

His fourth wife, Angela Leong, is spearheading several enterprises and was seen by analysts as keen to secure legislative approval of new projects.

She won one of the 12 seats in the legislature.

The other 17 seats are filled by appointees chosen by special interest groups or by Macau's incoming leader, Chief Executive Fernando Chui.

He was chosen in a controlled process earlier this year after it was clear that he was Bejing's favoured candidate.

Mr Chui is a scion of one of Macau's elite families, as his predecessor was, in a territory known for its tight links between government and business.

He will formally succeed Edmund Ho in December, as the second chief executive since Macau's return to Chinese rule.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
One candidate for Macau top job
17 Jun 09 |  Asia-Pacific
Protesters demand Macau democracy
20 Dec 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Asia: Democracy in Hong Kong
29 Sep 03 |  HARDtalk
Regions and territories: Macau
14 Dec 11 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Hong Kong
11 Dec 10 |  Country profiles


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific