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Hong Kong names NPC deputies
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Thirty-six deputies were elected on Friday to represent the Hong Kong special administrative region at the 11th National People's Congress (NPC), the country's highest legislative body.

The winners were returned by a 1,169-member electoral conference at an election meeting, which Sheng Huaren, vice-chairman of the NPC standing committee, described as "fair, open and just".

Sheng was in Hong Kong to oversee the election process.

NPC deputies should respect the country's constitution, the Basic Law and the principle of "One Country, Two Systems", Sheng said.

They should love the mainland and Hong Kong, and contribute to the long-term prosperity and stability of both, he said.

The newly elected deputies are scheduled to attend the first meeting of the 11th NPC in Beijing in early March.

Rita Fan, president of the Legislative Council and a serving NPC deputy, emerged as the biggest winner with 1,118 votes at Friday's election.

The winners, elected from 50 candidates, included several new faces, such as Executive Council members Bernard Chan and Laura Cha, and former head of the Independent Commission Against Corruption, Fanny Law, each of whom secured more than 1,000 votes.

Two serving local deputies Philip Wong and David Chu failed to retain their seats.

According to the election rules, each member of the Electoral Conference can vote for 36 candidates.

Ivan Choy, an instructor with the government and public administration department of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said the major difference of this year's election was the participation of younger candidates with higher academic and professional qualifications, and strong political debating skills.

(China Daily January 26, 2008)

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