Carrie Lam, chief executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), appeared in public to vote for the 2019 District Council Ordinary Elections on Sunday.
The elections, held every four years, are in the spotlight this year as escalating violent protests have almost paralyzed the Asian financial hub.
Meeting the press after voting, Lam said the district elections are very important and she appealed to the electorate to vote to represent their interests.
"We are facing many challenges but I am pleased to say that efforts with all parties have been made to ensure the election," Lam said, adding that the HKSAR government will closely monitor relevant developments and to make sure the elections are conducted successfully.
In the district council elections, 1,090 validly-nominated candidates will compete for 452 seats in 18 districts. More than 600 polling stations were opened for about 4.13 million registered voters. (Updated)