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Monday, March 27, 2017, 11:20

Leaders look forward to 'reunited Hong Kong'

By Albert Lin and Nick Li in Hong Kong
Leaders look forward to 'reunited Hong Kong'
Supporters of Carrie Lam gather outside the election venue to voice their backing for her. (Parker Zheng / China Daily )

Community leaders and political heavyweights hailed the city’s new Chief Executive-elect Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor , expecting her to rekindle hope and reunite Hong Kong people.

They also hoped the former chief secretary for administration would tackle deep-rooted social issues.

President of the Association of Hong Kong Professionals Eugene Chan Kin-Keung described Sunday as “a happy moment for Hong Kong”.

This had wiped away fears the city had to wait until a second election in May to have a new leader, should no candidates achieve the required 601 votes.

“The fact that the number of votes Lam achieved has exceeded her nomination numbers has demonstrated that the electors were won over by her substantive and detailed manifesto, and her sincerity and ability to continue serving the people of Hong Kong which came through during her campaign,” Chan said.

The result should have a stabilizing effect on society. “The people’s choice is now made and it is time we pull together as urged in her campaign slogan ‘We Connect’,” Chan said.

READ MORE: CE election hailed as ‘open, fair and just’

Echoing him was a former legislator and the first Chinese chairman of the Urban Council and life president of the Hong Kong Civic Association, Hilton Cheong-Leen .

Cheong-Leen welcomed the result. “She is the right person at the right time for this most challenging role,” he said.

He said Lam would have to put together a well-seasoned political team to bring to fruition what she had promised in her manifesto.

“With strong support from the central government, she should get o  the ground running to help the business community seize the opportunities that lie ahead and to strengthen Hong Kong’s competitive spirit,” Cheong-Leen said.

Meanwhile, pushing ahead with livelihood issues was equally important, he stressed. “The public need new housing programs, more quality education, more healthcare services especially for the mentally ill and the elderly, and new opportunities for our young people who are worried about their future prospects living here.”

He said Lam’s election motto — “Setting aside differences to connect for a better future” was a good consensus builder for Hong Kong people to work together for a prosperous and happier city.

“Also our new CE can devise ways to enhance Hong Kong’s role as China’s bridge to the global community.”

President of local think tank Wisdom Hong Kong, Chow Pak-chin , said the number of votes Lam received showed the recognition from the Election Committee members, who in turn represented the general public.

Chow felt Lam should lead Hong Kong in seizing the opportunities brought by the nation’s 13th Five- Year Plan (2016-20) and the Belt and Road Initiative and play its role in the national development.

Throughout the election campaign, Lam demonstrated a humble attitude, which could help mend social rifts, Chow said. “I hope the ‘pan-democratic’ camp could put the benefit of Hong Kong in the first place and work together with the government for a better prospect of the city.”

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