Hong Kong Youngsters Draw Inspiration on Democracy from Taiwan Election

by Sing Lee

New Power Party (NPP) founded after the 2014 Sunflower movement has won five seats in Taiwan's Legislative Yuan election. The up and coming political group garnered 740,000 votes.

Chairman of NPP, Huang Kuo-chang, said the party will continue to be an open, transparent and active political party.

He thanked their young members and volunteers who have worked behind the scenes, saying that they have been crucial in the party's victory.

In his audience was a group of Hong Kong youngsters who came to Taiwan to witness the election. Mr Huang said he admired them and noted that they face " a much more difficult situation" than Taiwan.

He told them to never give in after the 2012 protest against national education and the 2014 Umbrella Movement.

The NPP leader believes young people in Hong Kong share his belief in universal values and they will eventually be able to decide who should be in government if they persist.

Joshua Wong, leader of Scholarism, is among the Hong Kong visitors. He witnessed Tsai Ing-wen's victory in the presidential election at her campaign headquarters in Taipei.

He said to The Young Reporter that the rise of NPP and other "third force" will encourage more and more social activists in Hong Kong to run in elections.

Mr Wong hoped Hong Kong's post-umbrella movement organizations to make reference to the NPP when preparing for the Legislative Council election in September this year.

Earlier also in Taipei, Lester Shum Ngo-fai, the former deputy secretary-general of the Hong Kong Federation of Students, said political parties can learn from the NPP's method to reach consensus.

The NPP experimented with conducting a poll on the internet to allow everyone in Taiwan to nominate their legislative candidates. Mr Shum believed that's an effective way to reflect the voices of the citizens.

Both Joshua Wong and Lester Shum along with other student leaders were on invitation to the election observation tour by Hong Kong's think tank, Power for Democracy and Taipei's New School for Democracy.

Wang Dan, former student leader in the 1989 pro-democracy movement in Beijing is the chairman of the New School for Democracy.

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