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Over 3.1k virus cases identified

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 3,172 additional locally acquired COVID-19 cases, of which 449 were identified through nucleic acid tests and 2,723 via rapid antigen tests.   Separately, 111 imported cases were detected.   Furthermore, seven residential care homes for the elderly and five for disabled people logged 13 cases involving their residents.   The Hospital Authority reported that 20 patients passed away in public hospitals. According to a preliminary analysis, the cause of death for nine patients was related to COVID-19, while that of the remaining 11 patients was unrelated.   It also registered eight more critical cases, bringing the number of patients in critical condition to 93.   Separately, to align with the Government’s cancellation of issuing isolation orders from tomorrow, the authority will, starting from the same day, announce at 8.30am and 1pm the information of general out-patient clinics (GOPC) quota reserved for COVID-19

LegCo candidates hold diverse views

As a testimony to the diversity and inclusiveness of the improved electoral system, the 153 candidates for the upcoming Legislative Council election come from different backgrounds, hold different political views and have criticised government policies publicly, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said today.   In a statement on the 2021 Legislative Council General Election scheduled for December 19, Mrs Lam stressed that with objective analysis, one would find that the age, profession and background of the candidates are more diverse than those in previous elections, and there is no so-called "35+" "mutual destruction" organisation or politically-driven competition as in the past polls.   She said: “Any candidate having the support of the voters can be elected to enter the political system of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region to take part in the implementation of 'patriots administering Hong Kong'.   “I hope that every candidate will compete with the manifesto and solicit the support of voters in a pragmatic manner.   “I appeal to registered voters to vote on December 19 for Hong Kong's future.”   Relevant work on the review of the eligibility of the candidates was completed in accordance with the law yesterday and published in the Gazette, kickstarting the electioneering activities in the coming weeks.   The 153 candidates will compete for 90 seats to be returned by three constituencies. They will form the Seventh-Term Legislative Council to discharge LegCo’s constitutional duties from January 1 next year.   Mrs Lam expressed gratitude to the Candidate Eligibility Review Committee chaired by Chief Secretary John Lee, namely the three non-official members Elsie Leung, Rita Fan and Prof Lawrence Lau, for conducting a large amount of work in a short period of time and completing scrutiny in a prudent, objective and efficient manner.   The Chief Executive said she will continue to urge the Electoral Affairs Commission, with the full support of various government departments, to ensure arrangements are smooth on the polling day.   The Constitutional & Mainland Affairs Bureau is liaising with Mainland authorities to firm up voting arrangements on boundary control points on the polling day for Hong Kong registered voters in the Mainland and will make an announcement as soon as possible, she added.   While stating that the Legislative Council is an important institution in the the Hong Kong SAR’s political system, the statement also noted that governance was continuously disrupted by people with anti-China sentiments in LegCo who entered the governing system via elections.   Owing to political infighting, Hong Kong missed a lot of opportunities to give full play to its unique strengths to take full advantage of the development of the country, it added.   The statement concluded that with the improvement to the electoral system, Hong Kong is back on the right track of "one country, two systems" to open a new chapter on good administration and governance.
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