Public Eye

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 September, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 02 September, 2009, 12:00am

Mr I Don't Know raises the temperature

Legislator Emily Lau Wai-hing says she's deeply angry and shocked. What's more, she said it in a deeply angry and shocked tone. Actually, she's always deeply angry and shocked. She wouldn't be Emily Lau otherwise. This time she's deeply angry and shocked over Victor Lo Yik-kee. As the Security Bureau's political assistant he is paid HK$134,150 a month to say 'I don't know'. When he does know something, he reads it from a prepared script. That's presumably to make sure that what he does know doesn't also come out as 'I don't know' by the time it has travelled from his brain to his mouth. To prevent this, he makes sure he knows as little as possible. This way, he can almost always say 'I don't know'. But he so overdid it at a recent meeting with legislators and human rights groups that Lau wrote a deeply angry and shocked letter to Lo's boss, security chief Ambrose Lee Siu-kwong, accusing Lo of being ignorant. Lo immediately denied he was an ignoramus. A way to prove this is to get his head checked at a public hospital. But these hospitals have been so messing things up there's a high chance doctors would erroneously check his posterior for piles instead. Lau should lighten up. Lo was simply doing his best to earn his pay. Imagine how hard it would be on his conscience to bank HK$134,150 of public money every month without saying 'I don't know' enough times. Besides, how else would he get enough practice to be promoted? Those top government jobs are really demanding. Not only must you meet your daily quota of 'I don't know', you must say it just right to make sure Emily Lau doesn't get deeply angry and shocked.

Straight from the horse's mouth

Emily Lau: What is your function as the security secretary's political assistant?

Victor Lo: I don't know.

Lau: Why don't you even know your own job?

Lo: Wait please, I have the answer in a prepared script. Hmm, uuh, er, I don't know.

Lau: But you just said you had it in a prepared script.

Lo: Yes, the script says 'I don't know'. Any other questions?

Lau: Yes, how many times must you say 'I don't know' to earn your pay?

Lo: I don't know.

Lau: I'm deeply angry and shocked. You're ignorant.

Lo: (reading from script) I deny I am ignorant.

Lau: How can you deny that?

Lo: I don't know.

It's time to spend a Sunday in Tsim Sha Tsui

As Director of Environmental Protection Anissa Wong Sean-yee is paid far more than Victor Lo. That means she knows even less about her job. But a situation seldom arises when she has to say 'I don't know'. That's because she makes sure she's never around to say it. Sundays and public holidays are when she's supposed to be protecting you from illegal construction noise. But those are the days she's unreachable, likely holed up in her ivory tower. She's at her desk weekdays (or at those 'meetings' bureaucrats are always at) when she's not needed. Public Eye could suggest she spends a Sunday in Tsim Sha Tsui, where a reader has told us of perennial and persistent illegal construction noise caused by big developers. But if Wong took our advice she would end up knowing something. That means not being able to say 'I don't know'. And we all know what that will do to her promotion prospects.

New Hospital Horrors - scarier than fiction

It's back! The new season of Hospital Horrors has only just begun but it's so action-packed you must be stuck to the edge of your seat, as Public Eye promised. Already the season has left everyone gaping over newborn babies being mixed up, babies injected with expired vaccine, a newborn given the wrong antibiotics and a dying cancer patient injected with morphine, which should have been orally administered. What next? A hospital ringing out with painful screams from patients undergoing colonoscopies because the nurses forgot to sedate them?