On March 26, 2017, a committee of 1194 voted for their new chief executive, the country's leader, Carrie Lam. According to the Hong Kong Registration and Electoral Office, Lam received 66.8% of the vote, while the other candidates Woo Kwok-hing and John Tsang received 1.8% and 31.4% of the votes, respectively.
Some Hong Kong citizens see the election of Lam with concern, while many higher level government officials applaud Lam for her win and even contributed to it on election day. However, many are making jokes about it. With Lam receiving 66.8% of the votes, meaning 777 of the total votes, many puns are spreading online from the number "7", which can be another interpretation for a word in the Cantonese language. Supporters of Lam call it a lucky number, though.
More importantly, citizens describe this as a selection rather than election. According to the Economist, "the choice was made... by nearly 1,200 members of a committee stacked with supporters of the Communist Party in Beijing." When the British returned Hong Kong to China in 1997, they established the principle of "one country, two systems." Since 1997, Hong Kong has been part of China geographically but still has its own governing system.
With the election of Lam, people are becoming increasingly worried that the the principle will no longer hold due to the fact that most of her support comes from wealthy business figures with strong links to Beijing. One of the protestors, Mabel Yau questioned this "election" questioning if she is truly pro-democratic when a committee of only 1194 supposedly represent the desires of Hong Kong citizens.
While Lam says she intends to unite the people of Hong Kong, who are so clearly divided, only her actions in the next few months will decide her effectiveness in doing so.