Hong Kong pro-democracy camp wins big in local elections
Hong Kong pro-democracy camp wins big in local elections

HONG KONG — Hong Kong held its local district council elections on Sunday after almost six months of anti-government protests.

Voter turnout was more than 71 percent, up from 47 percent in 2015, BBC News reports.

The elections are considered to be a test for the current Hong Kong government.

The city has a total of 18 district councils, of which the pro-democracy camp won 17, according to the South China Morning Post.

District councils mainly advise the government on local issues concerning their district, such as the use of public facilities and public services.

Several prominent pro-democracy activists including Jimmy Sham, who was attacked by masked assailants with hammers last month in Kowloon, managed to win district council seats in the local elections.

The district councils may play a significant role when electing Hong Kong's chief executive in 2022.

This is because the city's leader is elected by a 1,200-member committee, which includes 117 members chosen by district councillors.

In this system, whichever camp claims the majority of votes, has the ability to claim all 117 of these seats.

This could influence who is chosen to be the city's chief executive as the pro-democracy camp already held roughly 400 committee seats before the district council elections.

As six out of 70 seats are reserved in the city's Legislative Council for district councillors, the pro-democracy camp may also secure seats in the Legislative Council as the majority.

Hong Kong's Legislative Council has the ability to enact, amend, repeal laws or even start an impeachment process against the city's leader.