Ng Seng Fong quits Sunday election

Thursday, September 17, 2009
Issue 821, Page 1 & 3
Word count: 677
Published in: Macau Daily Times

By Poyi (Natalie) Leung

Ng Seng Fong, the fourth candidate of the Democratic New Macao Association (ANMD), announced yesterday that she will withdraw from the Sunday election, after being revealed that she has been sentenced to 39 months in jail on fraud and document forgery charges in July.

The 39 year old candidate on List 15 headed by incumbent lawmaker cum democrat Au Kam San said in a press conference that she had already collected the verdict statement from the court, and filed an appeal at the same time.

Local daily Journal San Wa Ou reported yesterday that Ng was found guilty on July 15 this year for one count of fraud and one count of document forgery. The Court of First Instance handed down an imprisonment of three years and three months.

Since it was reported that Ng did not attend the trial, the verdict would only come into effect after she collected the verdict statement.

The campaign poster of ANMD describes Ng as “a Buddhist, self-financing businesswoman, a New Macau Association member and having completed a nursing course at the Centre for Continuing Education of the University of Macau”.

Au Kam San said the Election Law does not require candidates with criminal responsibility to quit the election, but “in order to show accountability to society”, the 39-year-old mainland-born candidate decided to withdraw from the list.

Mr Au also said that the incident caught his team by “a big surprise”.

He added that by law people are allowed to run for the election when court has not yet given a verdict, and hence there was “no problem” at the time when Ng’s candidacy was confirmed.

According to Journal San Wa Ou, Ng and a local businessman Chong Peng Chong founded Chong Tek Trading Ltd in August 2005 to sell disposable supplies to hotel rooms.

It was reported that the mutual agreement said Mr Chong would be responsible to fund the company’s operation, while Ng would look for customers and supply products.

After that Ng showed to her business partner invoices issued by various local hotels such as the New Century Hotel, L’Arc New World Hotel, Hotel Royal and the Landmark Hotel, involving an amount of 356,640 patacas.

Yet, it was later found that the invoices were all counterfeit, and the hotel chops stamped on the invoices were made in the mainland as ordered by Ng.

The newspaper also quoted an informed source saying Ng had used the 278,000 patacas given by Mr Chong on personal expenses.

President of the Electoral Affairs Commission (EAC), Fong Man Chong, however said yesterday afternoon that they did not receive any notification to quit the election so far.

He said that a candidate wishing to withdraw from the election is required to file a certified declaration to the Public Administration and Civil Service Bureau (SAFP) today at the latest, then announce the decision on local newspapers and also notify the EAC.

The Election Law states that people who are not being deprived of political rights by court are still eligible to run for elections.

“I believe that the SAFP did not receive such kind of information and thus confirmed the candidacy,” Mr Fong said.

The EAC president said if a candidate is really going to quit, it is unlikely to cause any impact on the election itself since “voters are required to vote for a whole list rather than an individual candidate”.

He also said that he would not comment further until a formal notification was received.

On the other hand, the personal details, criminal mugshots and criminal record of Ng, in both Chinese and Portuguese, were posted on an internet forum on Tuesday night.

The post was already removed yesterday evening.

The Judiciary Police (PJ) in a statement yesterday said “only a small part of the content comes from the database of the bureau, but the format of the details is not from the bureau”.

Hence, the PJ said they are investigating whether someone inside the bureau leaked the police record, and if it is found substantial relevant procedures will be implemented by law.

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