Information tests missed 'because of tight schedule'

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 17 November, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 17 November, 1998, 12:00am

Key tests for the flight information display system at Chek Lap Kok were skipped although officials were fully aware of the risk involved, the Legco inquiry heard yesterday.

But Airport Authority project manager Tsui King-cheong said legislators should not jump to the conclusion that this was to blame for the system crash on opening day, July 6.

The inquiry heard the contract required two separate tests, one by the British producer Electronic Data Systems and another one on-site at Chek Lap Kok.

But Mr Tsui, who admitted he had no information technology training, decided to risk skipping the trials in Britain to hit a completion deadline in April.

Democrat Lee Wing-tat asked: 'As the project manager, you've made a very snap decision. You are paid with taxpayers' money. Don't you have a conscience?' Non-aligned member Margaret Ng Ngoi-yee asked: 'How can you take over a product without checking it?' Mr Tsui denied dereliction of duty and said the situation would have been worse if the project was not completed on time.

'I compromised because of the tight schedule but it would be more a matter of dereliction had I not made such a decision.' He insisted the two tests were similar.

Legislators were also told the cost of the system had increased by one-third to $310 million due to delays and modifications.

Asked how he would grade himself in cost control, Mr Tsui replied: 'I think I got a pass.'