• Thu
  • Nov 27, 2014
  • Updated: 11:49pm
My Take
PUBLISHED : Monday, 26 August, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 26 August, 2013, 4:04am

Cathay junket shows that Albert Ho Chun-yan is not so whiter than white

Bravo, Albert Ho Chun-yan, you have proved yourself to be every bit as shameless, disingenuous and mendacious as any politician.

The PR disaster of the Cathay Pacific junket may have involved public figures across the political spectrum.

You may object that I am picking on Ho. After all, lawmakers from the pro-Beijing Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong and Liberal Party also took part, among others.

But unlike Ho and fellow democrat and traveller James To Kun-sun, they never pretend to be whiter than white and holier than thou.

Ho, the former Democratic Party chief and occupant of one of the five so-called super-seats in the Legislative Council, is the only one who has gone out of his way to make misleading statements about the free trip to France.

Ho said: "The authority to [approve air operator's] licences lies solely with the government" and that lawmakers would not be giving Cathay any favours just because they were treated by the company.

Perhaps. But as has been pointed out, Ho is not just a legislator.

There is the small matter of Ho being a member of the board of the Airport Authority and that his tenure lasts till the end of 2015.

Those on the French trip have confirmed that Cathay management had repeated its opposition to granting an operator's licence to Jetstar Hong Kong, which could create a potential rival. That was what Ho's self-serving justification was referring to. Well, if not lawmakers, then surely the Airport Authority is an interested party, to put it delicately.

There is also the small matter of the proposed third runway, which of course Cathay and the Airport Authority support, and which unlike Jetstar's licence application, does require lawmakers' support.

Umm, is that a conflict of interest for Ho? Well, that's arguable, but we all know for pan-democrats like Ho, everything is a conflict of interest and corruption if it involves the government or its opposing camps.

But I am glad we have this controversy because it will teach some very naive Hong Kong people that pork-barrel politics, the you-scratch-my-back-I-scratch-yours variety, is the one true universal constant in politics.

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This article is now closed to comments

daily
Ho is also just another greedy SOB who pretends to be whiter than white..........another hypocrite who should just quit before his greed completely shows up..............actually, after this incident, it is already obvious this guy is GREEDY and CORRUPTED.
mercedes2233
Yes, those issues are important, but we have to stamp out corruption where it occurs. Countries which are corrupt go nowhere.
Byebye
Please do not waste time on this shameful act of greed by these so called "lawmakers". ICAC time to act, prosecute now.
Dai Muff
They have a long backlog. They haven'[t got round to Donald yet.
mercedes2233
Shame, shame, shame. I will never believe him again, for his very poor sense of judgement.
hkbulib2
Those that went should just all resign. Isn't that what they would have shouted at any government official doing the same thing? Shame and disgrace! That's all one can and has the time to say. Everything else is a waste of our time and tax to feed such shameless, greedy, ignorant, unprofessional, lazy, irresponsible...people!
daniel18
Pan-DAMN always come out as saint. They mess up HK government so that they can sit pretty in theworld. Emily Lau is the evil witch, keeps condemning othet parties and government official but keep silent about the dirt of her team members. She never has gutz to! I guess she will stir up other officials controversy to distract us so that she can aviod criticism. Albert Ho and Jame To definitely should resign to avoid the suspected conflict of interest among the stakeholder. But, they wil never, either. As they are still sucking blood from our public purse, they are so greedy and never have enough of it.
dynamco
To clarify the junket members: TEN Legco members on the trip
Legco
DEMOCRATS Legco declaration of interest form date
1 Albert Ho Chun-yan declaration 23/8 for trip 16-21/8 (HKAA board member)
2 James To Kun-sun declaration 23/8 for trip 16-21/8
ACCOUNTING
3 Kenneth Leung declaration 13/8 for trip 16-21/8
DAB
4 Ip Kwok-him declaration 20/8 for trip 17-21/8
5 Elizabeth Quat declaration 20/8 for trip 16-21/8 visited Frankfurt first
LIBERAL Party
6 Felix Chung Kwok-pan declaration 21/8 for trip 17-21/8
INDEPENDENTS
7 Chan Kin-por declaration 22/8 for trip 16-21/8 (also adds Scottish Parliament trip 12-16/8 2013)
8 Ma Fung-kwok declaration 21/8 for trip 17-21/8
REAL ESTATE & CONSTRUCTION
9 Abraham Shek Lai-Him declaration 22/8 for trip 19-20 /8 adds ‘a donation $50,000 to be made to HK Unison for acceptance of this free trip’
INDUSTRIAL (First)
10 Andrew Leung Kwan-Yuen declaration 08/7 registered 24/7 for trip 18-21/8
EXCO
11 Cheng Yiu-tong Chairman HKFTU declaration 09 /8 2013 for trip 17-21 (in a radio interview adamant he would not refund as he 'did no wrong')
AIRPORT AUTHORITY lobbyist former chief executive HKAA
12 Billy Lam Chung-lun
AIRPORT AUTHORITY lobbyist board member
13 Huen Wong
14 Unnamed academic from Baptist University
Hu R U
Apple Daily article (in Chinese) today - states no need for third runway -build third terminal instead
hk.apple.nextmedia.com/news/art/20130826/18394936
John Adams
I agree with you tenfon
chuchu59
It matters not so much whether one portays oneself as whiter than white. Pan-democrats or not, as long as they have accepted the offer, they are perceived to have accepted advantages that they should not have as legislative councillors.Not pretending to be whiter than white does not lessen the offence.
The misdeed committed by HO is likely to come back and haunt him come election day and he deserves every bit of it.

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