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Seventh Seimas of Lithuania

The Seventh Seimas of Lithuania was the parliament elected in Lithuania. Elections took place on 20 October 1996, with the second round on 10 November; the Seimas commenced its work on 25 November 1996 and served a four-year term, with the last session on 18 October 2000. In the elections in 1996, 70 members of the parliament were elected on proportional party lists and 71 in single member constituencies. Elections took place on 20 October 1996. In those constituencies where no candidate gained a majority of votes on 20 October, a run-off was held on 10 November; the elections were won by the Homeland Union - Lithuanian Conservative Party, which gained 70 seats, followed by 16 seats won by Lithuanian Christian Democratic Party. Democratic Labour Party of Lithuania, which had decisively won the previous elections, ended up with only 12 seats. Vytautas Landsbergis was elected as the Speaker of the Seventh Seimas and served throughout the term; the Seventh Seimas laid the foundations for parliamentary control in Lithuania.

The Seimas and the Government proceeded with the privatization of large public enterprises. During the first session of the Seimas the following parliamentary groups were registered: Homeland Union - Lithuanian Conservatives, Christian Democrats, Democratic Labour Party of Lithuania, Social Democrats, Joint Group, Independent Group and the Mixed Group of Members of the Seimas. Several splits occurred during the term. In late 1998 Laima Andrikienė and Vidmantas Žiemelis were ejected from Homeland Union - Lithuanian Conservatives, they were followed by another 10 parliament members who formed the parliamentary group of Moderate Conservatives in 2000. In the same year, Modern Christian Democrats split from the Christian Democrats and Social Democracy 2000s split from the Social Democrats; however to the Sixth Seimas, the Seventh Seimas saw few defections across ideological borders, due to the vast gulf between ruling and opposition parties. By the end of the term of the Seimas, the following parliamentary groups were active.

A total of 151 members were elected including 126 men and 25 women. Seimas had 137 members at the end of the term, as no new elections would take place in single-seat constituencies with less than 6 months of the term left

Oswald Cheung

Sir Oswald Victor Cheung, CBE, QC, SC, JP was a barrister in Hong Kong, known as the "doyen of the bar". "Ossie" was the first ethnic Chinese to become a Queen's Counsel in colonial Hong Kong, the first Chinese chairman of the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club. Cheung was a mentor to a number of eminent lawyers, including Margaret Ng. Born in Hong Kong in 1922, Cheung was brought up in the territory, was educated at the Diocesan Boys' School, where he graduated in 1938. Not quite 16 years old at the time, he entered university. From 1938 to 1941, he read natural sciences at the University of Hong Kong, received a degree in mathematics and chemistry upon his graduation. During the Pacific war, his family moved first to Macao, to China, he aided the British intelligence effort over the Japanese. He moved to Calcutta in 1945, in 1947, after the war ended, he received a scholarship to study a Master's in Law at University College, Oxford. Upon graduation, he was admitted to Lincoln's Inn. Cheung was called to the Bar of England by the Inn in 1951.

He was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1965 and in the same year he set up Sir Oswald Cheung's Chambers. He served as the Honorary Secretary of the Hong Kong Bar Association in 1952 and rose to become Chairman in 1966, gaining life membership of the Association in 1996. Cheung had a long record of public service during the post-war years, he served on numerous Government Committees. Professionally, he was member of the Supreme Court Rules Committee, chairman of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board and the Law Enforcement Injuries Compensation Board. Non-government roles included member of the Hong Kong Policy Committee on the Christian Children’s Fund, he was active on behalf of the Children’s Meals Society, the Police Children’s Education Trust, the Po Leung Kuk and the Sir David Trench Recreation Fund Investment Advisory Committee. For the government, he became a member of the Traffic Advisory Committee, the Economic Review Committee and the Fifth Marketing Advisory Board, the Fisheries Development Loan Fund Advisory Committee and director and panel member of the review board of the Inland Revenue.

Cheung served as a member of the Universities & Polytechnic Grants Committee. He was a member of the Legislative Council from 1970 to 1981 and the Executive Council from 1974 to 1986, he was bestowed with an OBE in 1972, knighted in 1987. An avid cigar aficionado, Cheung received burns when his silk pyjamas caught fire as he attempted to light a cigar, he died of complications on 10 December 2003. Captain in the Royal Hong Kong Regiment Chairman, Hong Kong Bar Association 1966.