Do you know who is representing us, the British-Chinese community in this upcoming election?
In this special General Election feature, Nee Hao introduces the British Chinese candidates from all the political parties.
In total there are seven parliamentary candidates with Chinese origins who will be taking part in the general election on the 8 June 2017. In the 2015 election, there was a record eleven candidates of Chinese origin but only one candidate won a seat in the House of Commons (Alan Mak).
“Most of our Chinese candidates are of a generation of British Chinese who have grown up understanding the UK political system and wanting to make a difference,” said Michael Wilkes, vice-chairman of the British Chinese Project.”
“I believe this is the beginning of the British Chinese breaking that political glass ceiling, and in the next 10 or 20 years nobody will be able to call the British Chinese ‘silent’ or ‘invisible’ anymore,” Wilkes added.
Labour have two ethnic Chinese candidates, Vincent Lo (Uxbridge and South Ruislip) and Rebecca Blake (Redditch).
The Conservatives have four ethnic Chinese candidates – Alan Mak (Havant), Jackson Ng (St Helens North), Wang Xingang (Manchester Central) and Edward Yi He (Leicester East).
The Liberal Democrats are fielding one ethnic Chinese candidate – Alexander Payton (North West Hampshire).
“For a long time, the Chinese community has stayed outside the political process in the UK,” said Joseph Wu, a member of the British Chinese Project.”
“Few Chinese candidates have stood in elections. But in the last six or seven years we have seen the Chinese becoming engaged in a wide range of political events and making use of the British political process to voice their concerns.”
“With the increased Chinese investment in the UK and Europe, parties increasingly recognise the need to engage the British Chinese community.”
Wu adds: ” I hope the candidates will encourage more Chinese to become involved in politics.”
The British Chinese Project, a not-for-profit organisation devoted to promote the engagement, understanding and cooperation between the Chinese community and wider UK society organised a nationwide tour promoting voter registration for this election.
“We need to vote and make Chinese voices heard by the government,” said Christine Lee, founder and chairwoman of the British Chinese Project.