Just a few meters away from a polling station -- but one
couldn't tell from this photo taken yesterday (unlike with photos
taken on November 24th, 2019 from around the same spot)!
Starting with where we left off on Friday: with Hong Kong swimmer Siobhan Haughey, who won a second gold medal at the World Swimming Championships over the weekend -- this time in the 100 meters freestyle race which also saw her break the meet record in this category! Adding to her achievements was her adding a bronze medal -- this time from the women's 400 metres free style -- to her haul yesterday.
Since Hong Kong does not allow voting from outside Hong Kong (except if you are one of the estimated 110,000 registered voters among the Hong Kong residents living in Mainland China who could get to the one of the three polling stations set up at the border yesterday), one can safely assume that Haughey did not vote at yesterday's Legislative Council "election" (the first to have taken place since China imposed its security law on Hong Kong and implemented sweeping changes to Hong Kong's electoral system). This puts her among the majority of Hong Kongers who didn't do so -- since only 30 percent of Hong Kong's registered voters elected to do so yesterday (in great contrast to the more than 71 percent who did so for the November 24th, 2019, district council elections)!
Put into raw numbers: only "1,350,680 of the 4,472,863 registered voters cast their ballots for city lawmakers in Sunday's poll", making for "the lowest turnout since Hong Kong's first ever direct election of its legislature in 1991". Consider this: that 1.35 million number is lower than the estimated attendance rate of a number of anti-extradition bill protest marches which took place in 2019 -- not just the June 16th "2 million person" march but also the 1.7 million rally-turned-de facto-march (because there was not enough space in Victoria Park to accomodate everyone!) in the pouring rain on August 18th, 2019 (for which a number of individuals subsequently were sentenced to up to 18 months imprisonment for having organized and/or participated in it).
Adding to the records broken yesterday: that for the highest number and percentage of spoilt votes. More specifically, 2.04 percent of the 1,350,680 votes cast yesterday were declared invalid. This includes those that were accidentally improperly filled out but the sense one gets is that the likelihood was higher than the ballot papers were either deliberately spoilt or left blank (as per the urging of the likes of former legislative councillor Ted Hui).
Truly, though, far more people were more intent on taking advantage of free transportation on the MTR, buses and trams to do such as head over to Ocean Park and Hong Kong Disneyland, or over to the country parks (many of whose trail heads are accessible via public transportation) for some hiking. Some people even decided to spend much of the day taking (free) public transportation: with the blogger over at The Fragrant Harbour having taken a number of rides over the course of some six hours that would have cost HK$101 if they hadn't been free yesterday!
Put another way: I think one can safely surmize that, to cite a Tweet by @Baakfanmouyan, "Hong Kongers resoundingly demonstrate[d] their contempt for the CCP-puppet government's sham elections with a historically low poll turnout". Ahead of this weekend, a friend told me she hoped to see voter turnout percentages that were in the 30s. In turn, and in part because I didn't want to be disappointed, I told her that even a 50 percent turnout would be enough to show that pro-Beijingers were/are not the majority in Hong Kong and show that a healthy number of Hong Kongers refused to have wool pulled over their eyes and believe that this "patriots only election" signified electoral "improvement" (rather than regression).
I should not have underestimated the Hong Kong people. And the following Niao Collective's Tweet should be read in this context: "Yes, you don't see pictures of the frontline dodging the [government's] tear gas anymore, but [Hong Kongers] not lending the regime any legitimacy in this sham of an election is in itself an act of resistance. The people haven't stopped protesting, they just have to do it a bit differently."
More than by the way, one other notable Hong Konger (besides Siobhan Haughey) who we know didn't vote yesterday: the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region's first Chief Executive, Tung Chee-hwa! And for the record: unlike Siobhan Haughey, he was in Hong Kong yesterday. So it's not like he's got that excuse for not doing so! At the same time, his spokesman was quoted as stating the following: "as always, Mr. Tung hoped that people will vote enthusiastically in the Legislative Council election, and Hong Kong will continue to be prosperous and stable"; and, in so doing, provided yet one more great example of Hong Kong's "leaders" tending towards the philosophy of "do as I say, not as I do"!