Editorial:A wave of change sweeping across district councils

【明報專訊】IT was an election battle carrying extraordinary meanings and producing markedly one-sided results. The pro-democracy camp grabbed more than 80% of district council seats in a landslide victory against the pro-establishment camp that obtained only 10% of the seats. With an unprecedentedly high turnout of voters, the election results have manifested both the changing and unchanged faces of Hong Kong politics. On the one hand, a large number of people cast their votes to express dissatisfaction with the government and even the entire establishment, thus spelling the end of the pro-establishment camp's long-standing control of the district councils. On the other hand, the ratio of the pan-democrats' share of votes to that of the pro-establishment camp remains largely unchanged at approximately 6:4. The relationship between the public and the government, as well as that between Hong Kong society and the central government, can no longer be restored to the point before the storm over the extradition law broke out. The district council elections have reflected a structural change inside Hong Kong. Now that nearly three million voters have expressed their preferences in a peaceful and non-violent way, both the SAR government and the central government are obliged to contemplate how to address public opinion and people's demands. Options from setting up an independent commission of inquiry to reshuffling the SAR government should all be considered.