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Election Amendment Bill Passed
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The Hong Kong Chief Executive Election and Legislative Council Election (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2006 was passed by the Legislative Council on Wednesday . 

"The Bill helps ensure the smooth conduct of the 2007 Chief Executive (CE) election," a government spokesman said.

He said the Bill sought to address the legal issues identified in the Fifth Report of the Constitutional Development Task Force and to provide for the electoral arrangements in the event that only one CE candidate is validly nominated.

The Bill provides that, if an election for a new term CE will be held within six months after a vacancy in the office of the CE has arisen, it will not be necessary to hold a by-election, he said.

The Bill stipulates that the term of office of the Election Committee (EC) will commence on February 1 in the year during which the period of office of the CE expires. It also states that a new CE returned in a by-election may only serve for one more term after expiry of the remaining period. The period will be regarded as one term, the spokesman said.

The Bill also proposes that if only one CE candidate is validly nominated election proceedings will continue, the spokesman added.

(Xinhua News Agency May 11, 2006)

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