New ICAC boss says C.Y. isn't his friend
New anti-graft agency head Simon Peh Yun-lu has rejected claims of a conflict of interest with Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying - the man who appointed him and the possible target of an investigation over illegal structures at his home on The Peak.
The new commissioner of the Independent Commission Against Corruption said his relationship with Leung was strictly professional.
'Mr Tsang is my former boss and Mr Leung is my current boss,' he said. 'Our relationship is a boss-and-subordinate relationship. We do not have any private friendship.'
The Democratic Party and League of Social Democrats have filed complaints with the ICAC, accusing Leung of making false claims during the March election that there were no illegal structures at the property.
It was revealed later that there were six such structures.
While Peh would not comment on progress in the investigation, he stressed that whoever appointed him had no bearing on the case, as the ICAC treated all suspects equally and every case fairly.
'There is no difference in investigating senior officials, other officials or people on the street. Our mission is that we have to do it impartially and independently,' Peh (pictured) said.
The ICAC's independence had been questioned when a Chinese-language newspaper reported that Peh met Leung before his official appointment. Peh explained that he was an official-designate at the time, and the meeting's purpose was to get acquainted with incoming ministers.
'At that time, I had not taken up the post. I had no knowledge as to ICAC's work. So I had nothing to tell the others,' Peh said.
Peh, an ex-immigration director, said he knew Leung as the Executive Council convenor, but Leung did not know him personally before approaching him for the job in May.
Democratic party lawmaker James To Kun-sun, chairman of the Legislative Council's security panel, urged a review of the appointment system, including allowing Legco to approve potential ICAC chiefs, as chief executives could place a trsuted associate in the agency.