All Around Town, October 11, 2012

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 11 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 11 October, 2012, 3:30am

Fat chance of perfect air, official warns

Cleaning the air is as difficult as losing weight, according to a senior environmental official, who made the comparison when telling the media not to expect too much in the next round of clean-air targets.

"I need to manage your expectations," said Andrew Lai Chi-wah, Deputy Director of Environmental Protection. "It is do-able for a 200-pound person to lose 50 pounds, but if you ask him to lose another 50 pounds after hitting 150 pounds, the room for reduction is limited." Lai said emission reduction targets between 1997 and 2010, set by the Hong Kong and Guangdong authorities, had been met. The next targets will be released later this year.

Joyce Ng


Party will go to any lengths for legal chair

After losing the Legislative Council presidency to Beijing loyalist Jasper Tsang Yok-sing, of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit is set to take up another challenge - seeking the chairmanship of Legco's legal affairs panel. Party colleague Dennis Kwok Wing-hang, a Legco newcomer, had been tipped to take on pro-government lawmaker Priscilla Leung Mei-fun, deputy chairwoman of the panel in the last term. But Leong said that with the pro-government camp apparently reluctant to elect a new boy as chairman, he might have to contest it himself - though he hinted that fellow party heavyweight Ronny Tong Ka-wah might run for the post if he was not seeking election as chairman of any other panel.

Leong said it is vital a pan-democrat was chairman to safeguard the rule of law.

Tony Cheung


Jeffrey Lam chided on funds for pals' events

Economic Synergy lawmaker Jeffrey Lam Kin-fung came under fire in internet current affairs forums including yesterday after reports in Chinese-language newspapers that a committee of which he is chairman approved government funding for events organised by his friends. The assessment committee of the Mega Events Fund on Tuesday allocated HK$26.85 million to four events - two of which are organised by friends of Lam.

The Hong Kong Well-Wishing Festival 2013, awarded HK$2.45 million, is organised by fellow member of Economic Synergy Chan Cho-leung.

The convenor of the Dragon and Lion Dance Extravaganza 2013 - awarded HK$1.4 million - is organised by Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong lawmaker Chan Kam-lam. Lam said he had declared his ties with Chan when the committee vetted the applications.

Phila Siu