Controversial deputy starts work

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 04 October, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 04 October, 2008, 12:00am
 

Greg So Kam-leung yesterday passed his first test since joining the deputy-ministerial ranks - introducing a consultation paper in which the government said it had no preconceived positions on the main proposals.

The undersecretary for commerce and economic development was the first of the eight undersecretaries recruited this summer to host a press briefing on a new government initiative.

The consultation paper on the review of the Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance puts forward 26 options for improving the regulation of obscene and indecent articles.

Mr So made frequent use of phrases such as 'we want to hear the public's opinions', 'we keep an open mind' and 'we have no preconceived positions' as he announced the launch yesterday of the first round of public consultation on the paper. Mr So, formerly a vice-chairman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, appeared calm and comfortable as he handled questions from journalists at the press conference and in a media briefing afterwards.

He was one of the new deputy-ministerial appointees caught up in the row over the decision of some of them not to renounce their right of abode overseas before their appointments were announced. He later gave up his Canadian citizenship.

James Sung Lap-kung, a political scientist at City University, said: 'Mr So's performance at the press conference was basically OK. But as the government has no preconceived positions on the proposals, it was not a difficult task.

'He had nothing to sell or defend in the consultation paper.'

Dr Sung said Mr So would be put to a more difficult test when he had to defend the proposals put forward by the government in the second round of the consultation.

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