BEIJING, May 26 -- Hong Kong interim leader Donald Tsang said on Wednesday that he had resigned in order to run for the city's top political job in a July election.
Donald Tsang declares his resignation in HongKong May 25, 2005.[newsphoto]"I've decided to step forward and embrace this new challenge. I want to work with Hong Kong people to take our community and economy to greater heights," Tsang told reporters at a briefing after submitting his resignation to Beijing.
Tsang said he would unveil his election platform after the State Council(cabinet) had approved the resignation, but he did not say when that was expected.
Financial Secretary Henry Tang would be acting chief executive with Tsang now on leave, the government said.
So far, two other men, Lee Wing-tat, chairman of the Democratic Party, and Chim Pui-chung, a former broker and ex-convict who was jailed for conspiring to forge share documents, have said they will run for the top post.
Neither legislator stands much chance of garnering the required 100 nominations to run against Tsang on July 10. If no one else gets enough support, Tsang would be declared the next chief executive when the nomination period closes on June 16.
Apart from Beijing's support, Tsang finds favor with Hong Kong people and popularity polls have consistently placed him in the lead, with support ratings of between 60 to 70 percent.
"He is very competent, he knows how to take orders from his seniors... he should be a good chief executive, he knows how to compromise with different political forces. He is popular," said Timothy Wong, a political analyst at the Chinese University.
(Source: China Daily/Agencies)