China's counties complete election
Updated: 2013-01-23 07:39
Elections in all of China's counties and townships have been completed, with fewer officials being elected and an unprecedented equal representation of urbanites and farmers.
Since early 2011, nearly 600,000 deputies have been elected to 2,878 county-level legislative bodies, and 1.9 million deputies have been elected to 33,281 township legislatures, according to a statement issued by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature, on Tuesday.
More than 981 million people registered to vote in the county-level elections, while 723 million registered for the township-level polls. More than 90 percent of those registering cast votes.
The statement highlighted achievements in safeguarding the rights of the country's vast floating population, or those who are not living at their registered permanent residence.
After being notified via fax, text message or e-mail, "a considerable number of migrants" returned home to vote, with many others entrusting friends at home to vote on their behalf, the statement said.
It said entrusted votes amounted to 80.76 million at county level and 67.22 million at township level, accounting for 8.23 and 9.29 percent of each group of voters, respectively.
However, few votes were generally cast by migrants, due to high travel costs and the complexity of entrusting procedures.
The elections mark the first round of general elections following a 2010 amendment to the Electoral Law that called for rural and urban areas to elect a number of deputies that is proportionally equivalent to the populations they represent.
Around 70 percent of voting districts at county level were labeled rural districts, up 5.82 percent from the previous round of elections in 2006, while 91 percent of township-level electoral districts were demarcated as rural areas.
A total of 408,190 deputies came from rural county-level electoral districts, representing 67.7 percent of the total number of county-level deputies.
Before 1995, the law stipulated that each rural deputy should represent a population eight times greater than that of an urban deputy. The ratio was reduced to four times after a 1995 amendment to the Electoral Law.