Sunday, May 08, 2011

Unconfirmed Results : WP has won Aljunied by a wide margin

Saw this in Yahoo!

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WP wins Aljunied GRC: reports[Link]

Early reports say the Workers' Party has won the key battleground of Aljunied GRC, beating the PAP team led by Foreign Minister George Yeo.

The WP win in Aljunied was reportedly more than 2 percentage points, which means it did not require a recount.

According to a Yahoo! source, the winning margin was more than 10 percent. An aide to Minister Yeo also told the Today newspaper that "we have lost."

Aljunied GRC, comprising of over 143,000 voters, was the most hotly contested ward in this General Elections. It is the first time that a GRC has fallen into Opposition hands. 

A comment by Sad Day on Yahoo!'s live blogging coverage of the results said losing Minister George Yeo was a big blow.

He said, "Losing George Yeo... Singaporeanought to see the system overseas, I was in UK for more than ten years and couldsee the big difference. Very sad."

Aljunied voter Nuraini Malik, 22, an NTU student told Yahoo! Singapore," I’m reallyhappy that WP won... I’m sadthat George is no longer a minister, because he was a very good one. But thenagain, I’m still very happy because this WP team has been really outstanding withtheir speeches and manifesto."

43 comments:

Anonymous said...

Our friends as delaying the announcement of the inevitable -_-

nklim1867 said...

Hurray Workers' Party. You have finally smashed the GRC rubbish.

Anonymous said...

Pinky improved to 69%.
I dunno what to say.

Anonymous said...

As expected, it is a PAP "tsunami", winning 80 or more seats out of 87 (90% of seats) and maybe with only 50+ % of the votes!

Because most likely only Aljunied and Hougang (total 6 seats) for WP.

As expected, except for Aljunied, majority voters in all GRCs want PAP to remain as government. A choice of the lesser of 2 evils.

So in future the only hope for opposition is to be ready to form the government. If not, will always lose big lah.

Anonymous said...

Pinky manipulated the GRC boundary in this election to add some "sure-win estates" to AMK to avoid humiliation.

He was humiliated in GE 2006 when he scored below the average of 66%.

Now, the GRC is broken into by WP. The next step is to decapitulate the evil father and son combo. Singaporeans, full battle order ahead!

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Lucky

Despite stronger-than-expected Christian support(courtesy of the archbishop who stupidly stuck out his neck in vain, SDP has lost Holland-Bukit Timah cos of the heartland HDB votes. The liberals, ie urself, talked a lot of fancy ideals but never connected to the ground. As warned.

Sigh.

Pls continue to support the only viable opposition, WP.
WP needs you.

Cassandra

Anonymous said...

It's somewhat disappointing. But either way, I am already planning my exit out of Singapore whatever. The GRC system has always ended up being something that screwed up the possibility of opposition politics or even a balanced voice in parliament.

Anonymous said...

Long live democracy! May the opposition take democracy to greater heights for people and nation. Do your best and watch your back. Dun forget the people are watching everyone, so are your opponents. All the best!!!

Anonymous said...

As proven again, GRC system can only win big or lose big for number of seats but not necessary proportional vote percentage.

And very sad that some who seem more deserving to win didn't win while others won.

And this is already the best chance for opposition to win but they did not win more than 10% of seats.

So in future how to win more?

Anonymous said...

While I expect PAP to retain 2/3 of seats, I was hoping to see at least 10-12 seats for Opp. However, reality has proven once again, Singaporeans just don't have what it takes to take the leap.

By 2016, the (1) electoral zones will be redrafted heavily again (2) FTs will hv overtaken locals (3) they will try to dominate into social/new media space like MSM. (4) a new heir will be announced since TPL has paved the way...the battle will be harder....

Like the previous blogger above, I'll be making my exit plans. Don't expect the leopard to change its spots, and particularly with this lot of calibre of MPs.

Thanks everyone! It's been a well fought battle.
Sincerely one of the most exciting one. And unless WP comes back with a 100% strong team who's ready to form the next govt, I won't bet on the future of SG.

I rest my case and eyes now. God bless, and thank you S'poreans for making me feel singaporean and united one last time! It was great memories I'll always treasure.

Anonymous said...

Most People will look at the results and feel that nothing has changed with the PAP Juggernaut winning all but 6 seats.
I see things differently,I take heart that not all Singaporeans can be cowed by the threats and intimidation tactics thrown by the government.
To the Residents of Aljunied GRC, you have stood up bravely for your fellow Singaporeans. You have risen above what the PAP has tried to do the last few days, to appeal to Man's 'selfish' nature, to try to win your votes by threatening to turn your estate into a 'Slum' and telling you that you will 'repent' for the next 5 years if you do vote the WP into parliament.

It is understandable in the lights of such threats that many Singaporeans will choose the easy way out but you guys stood firm!

I salute Residents of Aljunied GRC as True Heroes of Singaporeans!

F430 said...

It was an unfair election to begin with. The GRC is nothing more than a fail safe line for the PAP. The opposition have an average of 40% of the vote but only got 6 mp out of 80+ seats. what an injustice!

I voted twice in my life and always the opposition. And give me back potong pasir, elections Dept.

Anonymous said...

WP has shown that the GRC can be brought down. Spread the words. Tell them how to bring down those sons and bitches.

Anonymous said...

I salute the voters of Aljunied GRC for not succumbing to LKY's threat. I just wish that more voters in the other constituents had more courage and voted with their conscience. Alas, fear is a big deterrent. We'll have to see how this outcome will work from now on. Personally, I'm not too hopeful. Still, I would like to give my heartfelt thanks to all the opposition candidates and supporters for their sacrifices. They are the true citizens of Singapore.

Anonymous said...

I am a resident of Ang Mo Kio GRC and I am so ashamed of the overall results. Certainly, I did not expect PAP to increase in their percentage. In my humble opinion Singapore is as good as finished. I am also making my exit plans as really there is no future with PAP abusing the system and power. For those who has voted for PAP, you are a total failure for yourself and your family and future generations. Thank you. Unfortunate Singaporean will has served his national service and reserve duties.

Anonymous said...

Although we did not make a giant leap, at least we make a step forward. Well done WP.

Anonymous said...

Many fail to see the Old Man's brilliant strategy. He intentionally weakened Aljunied so that GY will be sacrificed. TCH now has to give up Defence to take over as FM thus isolating GCT. Furthermore by sending TPL to Marine Parade, GCT's winning margin is way below LHL's. LHL can now consolidate his power in the cabinet. The Lee family has won big here.

UNLUCKY said...

Dissapointed at the overall results

But delighted that Aljunied is in good hands!

The signal is very clear:

We are not ready for change...
When in doubt we fall back unto the known evils.. sigh.. the spirit of venture and "I can do this!" is lost
on many.

Kiasuism is alive and well.

More 5 years of toil
More 5 years of sour faces on trains
More increases..

Well, thank you lucky for all the effort of sharing. You did the best you could. I enjoyed the journey, the hope and the dare.
Alas! You & I are too few..

Have a great sunday.

Anonymous said...

PAP Aljunied GRC candidate Zainul was publicly announced before the elections to be appointed the next Speaker of Parliament, a post that can act as President, when the President is on leave, etc.

I also understand that one need not be elected MP to be Parliament Speaker.

So like that how? Will Mr Zainul still accept the Speaker post?

Anonymous said...

The doom days are coming!
The green light is shining brightly and strongly.
The election result shows that Singaporean like:

- Huge number of foreigners to be mass imported to come here.

- Boss are prepared to replace Singaporean by foreigners.

- More foreigners become permanent residents and new citizens.

- By next election, Singaporean makes up less than 50% in Singapore.

- Price of HDB flats are going to rise even higher beyond any ordinary Singaporean affordability.

- Medical fees are going to rise higher.

- MRT and bus fares are set to be raised.

- Electricity, gas and water bills are going to rise.

- Since GST remains at 7%, various form of direct and indirect taxes are going to rise.

Anonymous said...

The Aljunied WP team has 3 lawyers or of legal background & training - Chen Show Mao, Sylvia Lim and Pritam Singh.

What I understand and heard is that lawyers generally are well suited for politics due to their training and work.

So hope that they can perform well as MPs both inside and outside Parliament.

Anonymous said...

"What I understand and heard is that lawyers generally are well suited for politics due to their training and work."

Namely because of their argumentative skill. But this skill must be carefully employed, it's a double-edge sword. And not to defend something which is technically correct (rule based already decided by a influential body) but morally and ethically wrong (intuitive gut feel which may yet to be codified).

Anonymous said...

Many months ago, I wrote in your blog commentary that I would migrate from Singapore if the percentage of votes for the incumbent does not fall below 60%. I would also not accept a result that was 60% for the incumbent.

Today, the people of Singapore has spoken.

They are still blind and unconscious. Many malay voters and the elderly still voted for the incumbent.

After so much shit has happened, Mah Bow Tan is still in parliament to screw up the housing policy even further. It is amazing to see that he did not admit his mistake but continued the propaganda to say everything is fine. And the people of Singapore voted him to continue further hurting young Singaporean couple.

I have made my mind. I am migrating. And this is my last post to you. This country is decaying and sinking and it seems to me that we need more shit to be slung at our faces and things to drop to a real low before the people of singapore realises that the government's policies is hurting our lives. And they still tolerate it because they are healthy and have a job for the time-being.

Thank you. Good luck.

There is not more to be said. I wish Singaporeans all the best with its new found Indian and China talent in this country.

I will contribute and make another country more successful. I rather be a second class citizen in another country than a third class citizen in my own.

All the Singaporean talent are/have/will be leaving Singapore.

Good luck to you guys who are continuing this.

I would like to be in a better place where houses are affordable and so are cars. I would like to be in a place where hidden taxes are low and 4 climates to boot. Where people are gracious and not ugly as most Singaporeans are.

I regret I ever was born here. I really do.

Anonymous said...

"I have made my mind. I am migrating."
Anon 8/5/11 09:40

Wow, you have learn fast from our foreign talents. Because they must have been also frustrated in their own countries, that's why they emigrate to Singapore, a better place for them.

So which better country are you migrating to, care to share? Are they also like Singapore, where foreigners are sometimes taken better care of than own citizens?

Seriously I am considering too, although I don't think I am a real talent.

Anonymous said...

I was full of hope that change will come to Singapore on 7th May but alas Singaporeans have once again fail to raise to the challenge. Its a really sad day although WP have made a significant step forward. We'll be further burden for the next 5 years and will have to live with this consequence.

Anonymous said...

6 seats for the opposition!

Although not exactly a lot, but it is the highest number since 1963, in 48 years!

So you can see, very, very tough for the opposition.

And very, very easy for some PAP MPs.

Why life like that hah?

Anonymous said...

For the first time in a long time, we have opposition MPs from the 3 major races, Chinese, Indian and Malay.

This is also what GRCs are intended to but ironically this time for the opposition.

Anonymous said...

"Seriously I am considering too, although I don't think I am a real talent."

I think the nation has degenerated to this divide. Hence, the stench of hypocrisy greater.

Anonymous said...

singaporeans are idiots. they still end up choosing WKS and MBT. another 4 years of lapse national security and increased property prices.

Anonymous said...

"The Aljunied WP team has 3 lawyers or of legal background & training - Chen Show Mao, Sylvia Lim and Pritam Singh.

What I understand and heard is that lawyers generally are well suited for politics due to their training and work.

So hope that they can perform well as MPs both inside and outside Parliament."

They are good adversary, and most of them rather arrogant, that's all

LKY was one

Anonymous said...

Apparently, the heavens don't believe George when he trumpeted for Change.

I reckon the heavens heard...small change and decided to rip his pocket.

George, no talent is indispensable but the soul of man is not.

Anonymous said...

I am also migrating. Singapore has no hope without a political reform to have more accountability and transparency. Democracy and multi-party system are important for country to survive in this globalised 21st century. his show Singapore voters are really daft and selfish. They do not understand the important of breaking a monopoly of parliament. With the gerrymandering and GRC system, Singapore has no future. Everything will remain the same so what there are 6 opposition MPs in parliament. They are just making some noises and the ill policies will still pass. Singaporean are daft enough that do not see the whole picture and still think that only PAP has all the talents. The only good thing is my HDB flat and car are still fletching high prices that I can convert to cash and move elsewhere. Good bye, Singapore.

Anonymous said...

"Everything will remain the same so what there are 6 opposition MPs in parliament. They are just making some noises and the ill policies will still pass."

I hope that with their small win, WP can attract more talents so that next round they will announce they are ready to form the govt.

If not ah, opposition forever will lose big one for sure, no matter how unhappy voters are with PAP.

Anonymous said...

Whatever the outcome, we cannot deny the political awakening of S'poreans. This GE has shown that we are not apathetic n we will can take control if needed. It is up to the PAP to do damage repair and for the WP to prove that they will not be 1 hit wonders. All in all, competition is good, that's the government's mantra anyway. The NSP could have followed a similar strategy as the WP's. My wish is that the quality opp candidates will pool under 1 main party and mount challenges again. The ruling party better reform, listen, spring clean, step down from their ivory castles, self reflect on their obscene salaries etc. The next GE promises to be more exciting. S'pore should belong to true blue S'poreans, this is my country, not a cheap hotel for whores and pimps.

Anonymous said...

Dear Lucky Tan,

I'm was the anonymous poster who gave you that Prof's link on healthcare in Singapore.

And I'm also moving out and are making concrete plans to move to another country. Singapore and Singaporeans are over for me. I will work harder for my future in another land. The problem is nothing good will land in this soil as too many are still unaware nor alert to the serious issues.

Hardly any posters and commentors pay much notice to the facts of the matter.

"It was an unfair election to begin with. The GRC is nothing more than a fail safe line for the PAP. The opposition have an average of 40% of the vote but only got 6 mp out of 80+ seats. what an injustice!"

How is that when the people have spoken and wanted 40% of the seats in parliament to be represented by their opposition candidates, yet we see that those very 40% of the parliamentary seats going to the incumbent and a Tay Pei Ling to boot?

Pray tell, how corrupted the systems has been crafted in this way. It had been designed in this way for some years and people are still not undoing the GRC. Is this morally right? Is this fair?

As long as the GRC remains, nothing will change in this country. Only the degree of propaganda will intensify as the incumbent builds up further readings on updated research on social psychology, i.e. how to socially engineer the dwindling Singaporean minority in its own population.

I'm leaving Singapore for 3 reasons:
an overly crowded transport system and daily living, we're a young couple who can't afford a flat of 4-5 years nor a resale one, no universal healtcare.

Anonymous said...

Singapore is a company and no longer a country. Laws are crafted to keep the powers that be in their positions; not for democracy but for demagogy.

Income gaps will rise. And the society is already crumbling from within as families can't afford to keep up with the cost of living.

It's a pity as many youngers Singaporeans will be experiencing the brunt of this 7 May outcome.

The incumbent's machinery is really heavy and it's crumbling too.

But I'm sorry, I can't wait another 15-20 years before change actually BEGIN to start in Singapore.

I would have already lived a good part of my life in such a strained and heavily stressed society.

Many people are not even reading the news as they're so busy with many things.

I would to say something about the Malay votes for the incumbent. One of the reasons the malay voters continue to support the incumbent is because they enjoy at least 70% of their university fees paid by the government through Mendaki. This, on top, of the subsidised rates the community collect from cheaper primary, sec and JC school fees. Also, most of the hand-outs go to this community. The majority of the PSLE, N and O-level exam registration fees of the Malays are paid by the government at subsidised rates. Most pay only 30%.

Now, this community would not want to let this go away. I doubt they will. We can also observe the Indians and Chinese have nothing special in this country. They have to slog with zero. Today, a malay graduate can graduate from NUS and NTU with any university loans to pay. They could immediately drive a car.

But the Chinese and Indians have to repay tuition fee loans for years on end.

This is meritocratic Singapore.

And I've decided like the other posters to contribute my talent overseas and let the China and India young couples contribute here instead.

I leave you with an answer to a question you asked sometime back regarding what sort of people WKS is looking at when he givens Singapore citizenship to these people.

The answer is this: Young COUPLES with degrees, early 30s, married with a very young child or baby.

They hope that these individuals will set their roots in Singapore and serve as the quick fix to their child policy in the 1970s.

It is certain now that Singaporeans are OK that the ministers pay themselves millions. Moraly decay is rife in Singapore. People will begin to NOW SOLELY judge one another on how much income they earn. Ethics will drop to the point where there would hardly be any social capital left in this country except to depend on national reserves.

I do not blame the people of Singapore and they wanted 40% opposition but the government tweaked and doctored the electoral boundaries and the system to have more of their MPs representing the 40% who voted against them.

PAP is not exactly representing the majority of the people in Singapore. GRCs allows them to win big and lose small even with a small margin of victory votes.

They work less but earn more. That's our government's mantra.

You can't change a system overnight. It's incremental and it needs time.

You have done a noble act. But I have only this life to live.

In any case, I will comment nothing from hereon. I leave you now.

Thank you and good bye.

Amused-Not! said...

Some analysis is in order:

PAP’s 60.1% share may actually be much worse than it looks. In 2006, oppositions competed in only 47 out of 84 seats, presumably in more opposition friendly wards. Had they competed in all 84 seats in 2006, PAP likely would have won over 70% votes. So this may represent a 10% vote swing among the electorate.

Despite winning only 60.1% of the votes, PAP still manages to retain 93% of the seats in the parliament, mostly due to its meddling of the electoral system over the past decades. It again has the power to amend constitutions at will. But this time it may suffer voter backlash without a referendum.

Once again, it has proved to be an uphill battle for any opposition to succeed in Singapore politics. The WP had to field an extraordinary field of candidates just to win a GRC. Many capable and popular opposition politicians in the past, including JBJ and FS, were either prevented from contesting through bankruptcy and other means or were in exile.

WP has accomplished the impossible by winning a GRC but this feat is unlikely to be repeated in future elections. PAP will continue to enjoy super majority representation in the parliament despite having only 60.1% share of voter support. People opposing PAP policies will find it futile to effect change. They will have to work with PAP or leave the system (as LKY suggested to CSM to go back to China.) So expect the brain drain to continue and foreign nationals from developing countries to take up the slack.

Anonymous said...

patriot made a call to Aljunied Voters to vote for change here in Lucky's and they did not disappoint me.

Thank You All my dear Fellow Aljunied Singaporeans, we may meet in person but not in Cyberspace anymore.

All the best from: patriot

Anonymous said...

patriot made a call to Aljunied Voters to vote for change here in Lucky's and they did not disappoint me.

Thank You All my dear Fellow Aljunied Singaporeans, we may meet in person but not in Cyberspace anymore.

All the best from: patriot

Anonymous said...

I'm migrating too with my young family, for reasons so eloquently put by various posters above.

S'poreans have shown themselves to be humji & NATO.

81-6 is a totally flawed result considering 40% of the votes go to the opposition.

As remarked by a poster above: I have only 1 life, and I'm not gg to wait 15-20 years for real change to come to SG.

Anonymous said...

Your blog is better than yawning bread because it gives a good frame of reality using simple facts and evidences. It is admirable to see you do this.

I believe it would be an even greater sad day for Singapore when the day comes that you stop blogging on what affects us the most.

I suppose more and more youngers singaporeans coming in to vote in the next 2 terms will change things.

In fact, i go as far to say that things are changing albeit not at a pace that we want...

I think is for sure...there is a solid 40% Singaporeans in this country who is against the governments' policies and greed.

This 40% have been ransomed by the GRC system. Their voices are not heard because PAP had crafted a system that doesn't allow their voices to be heard. This is sad. Very sad. And dangerous for Singapore.

cont'd.

Anonymous said...

'con'td

A number of things will happen in Singapore.

More overcrowding.
A higher level of propaganda will be in place.
More restrictions on our freedom to voice out.
Cost of living will escalate.
HDB problem will worsen more for younger singaporeans. Many will not marry as they don't have enough in CPF from their low pay to marry, let alone buy a waiting period of 4-5 years hdb flat nor buy resale as foreigners are raising the prices of these resale flats through the rising COVs.

And MAh Bow Tan will sit back and take in his millions and let the situation become even worse. Then he will disappear.

It's unbelievable how corrupted our country is. And the people they know it.

60% of Singaporeans voted for PAP, but they get 93% of the seats in parliament.

The other 40% of Singaporeans voted for their alternative parties to represent them, and they were given 6% of the parliamentary seats.

DO YOU THINK THAT"S PROPER CONDUCT? DO YOU THINK THAT"S FAIR?

Never all that...DO YOU THINK THAT'S EVEN RIGHT?

These 40% will grow and they will hit 50% by 2016. But it would be too late. Singaporeans will be a minority in their own population.

And PAP will continue to "test" the system with the Singaporeans to see where their threshold for pain is.

It's already late. The future damage is irreversible. Get ready to struggle even more in this country.

I see more oppresion of rights in the future.

Even when WKS screwed up, the people voted him in, not so much because they did....it's because of gerrymandering.

By the next election, PAP would have overused its gerry-mandering cards too much and that will be a downfall for them.

For 10 years, PAP has resorted to gerry mandering. This also shows how desperate they are.

I would advise SDP to merge with SPP and NSP and a united front.

Otherwise, change won't come to Singapore sooner.

Is it possible for them to do this? If they could mobilise in the next election as a united front rather than a stand alone and discreet parties, they can't beat the GRC system. It would be good practise for them to learn how to negotiate with each other. If they could negotiate with their counterparts who are also singaproeans and they are fighting for, then it would look for all of us singaporeans to be seen as united.

Can this happen? Will this happen in the next election? Could SDP and the rest come together as a collected front? Can they do this? Will they do this? If they could, an incisive bullet will go through the GRC system.

NSP, SDA, SPP, SDP and PKMS needs to come together as one party. WP will stand alone based on the fact that it has a track record.

Unless the opposition remain united as they have in this election....but more needs to be done. They need to merge. THis is precisely what they should do. WP can stand alone. BUt the rest need to merge. Otherwise, the PAPies are going to call in for an alternative government card.

The rest should join the bandwagon of WP for a first world parliament.

Unless the oppostion wakes up to this fact, I suggest they retire from politics.

Is it difficult for the SDP and the rest to merge when that is obvious from the game the incumbent calls?

If you really want to help us Singaporeans, do it. I'm sure all the other opposition parties knows that this is the way forward. Otherwise, you're wasting time and you're wasting money.

Be intelligent and morally worthy at the same time. But be flexible and smart please. You need to merge to break the GRC system.

Make that difference and regardless of any 2016 gerrymandering, singaporeans will send you to parliament. Just don't rub egos and let your manifesto egos get in the way.

Cheers! I'm waiting for 2016 Opposition Unity. It is easier for the oppositions to work together than for the fragmented PAPies' camp to work together within their party.

Bridge the gap that you so know has to be done

Daft Singaporean said...

Dear Lucky,
Please read this article. HK is being screwed like Singapore too.



http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/3fdfe156-7a56-11e0-af64-00144feabdc0.html#axzz1Lk4pAycF

Backlash against Hong Kong baby boom

By Rahul Jacob in Hong Kong

Published: May 9 2011 17:23 | Last updated: May 9 2011 17:23

For a city with an ageing population, a baby boom should be good news. But the one under way in Hong Kong is the result of women travelling across the border from mainland China to give birth in the city, and it is provoking an angry backlash.

The number of babies born in the city to mainland Chinese women who were not married to Hong Kong husbands rose to 32,653 last year – more than a third of all the city’s births – and up from 620 a decade ago.

Most mainland mothers-to-be are drawn by the prospect of permanent residency for their children, an automatic right for those born in Hong Kong, which retains a much more liberal political, legal and economic system than the mainland. There is also the added benefit of avoiding a financial penalty for breaking Beijing’s one-child policy.

The Hong Kong government has come under pressure from doctors at government hospitals and from Hong Kong citizens to curb the practice.

A Facebook group calling itself “strongly against mainland mothers delivering children in Hong Kong” refers to such expectant women as “grasshoppers”.

The issue has come to the fore as first-time home buyers in the city complain about being priced out of the property market because an influx of wealthy mainland Chinese has driven prices to records. On Monday the Hong Kong government’s education bureau told the South China Morning Post that the number of mainland-born children studying in Hong Kong’s school system had increased to 9,899 last year, more than double the figure five years ago.

The increase in the number of births continues to prompt anxiety, especially in Hong Kong’s public hospitals.

“The Hong Kong medical system is beyond overheated. It will become unsafe. We say we must cap the number of deliveries,” warns Cheung Tak Hong, who heads the obstetrics and gynaecology department at the Prince of Wales public hospital in Shatin, not far from Hong Kong’s border with China.

In response to the pressure, York Chow, Hong Kong’s health secretary, last month announced the government would centralise the registration of bookings by all prospective mothers who were not residents of the city and tighten checks to ensure the pregnancies were uncomplicated.

Many observers see this as the first step towards an eventual cap on the number of spaces available in private hospitals to mainland mothers-to-be.

Private hospitals have been criticised for using agents to solicit more business from across the border.

At the privately owned Baptist Hospital a sign reads: “Strictly prohibit agent to promote business.” Underneath it, Ma Sheung Fong, an agent who arranges for mainland mothers to give birth in Hong Kong hospitals, is boasting about how good business is.

Ma is from Hunan and the agency she runs – Hong Kong Good Baby – typically charges US$2,200 to reserve a bed, pay for a week’s medical checks and process the documentation needed for permanent residency. In 2007 Hong Kong’s Hospital Authority instituted a maternity package fee of HK$39,000 (US$5,000) for mainland women wanting to give birth in Hong Kong, but that has not reduced the number of women seeking residency for their children in the city.

Ahead of the government’s announcement last month, a number of public hospitals said they would no longer take bookings from pregnant mainland women for the foreseeable future.

Dr Cheung at Prince of Wales hospital – though alarmed by the coachloads of mothers being ferried across the border into Hong Kong by agents – says he understands the rationale. “It’s parents trying to give their children a better chance,” he says.

Additional reporting by Lydia Guo in Hong Kong