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  • Dec 26, 2014
  • Updated: 8:53am
Leung Chun-ying
NewsHong Kong

Leung Chun-ying apologises for illegal structures

Chief executive sorry for his 'negligence' but insists he did not try to hide the truth

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 25 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 25 November, 2012, 3:35am

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying apologised yesterday over the illegal structures at his home on The Peak, a day after issuing a statement to explain them.

And he denied hiding anything, after critics questioned why he had waited until now to disclose the existence of several more unauthorised works on top of the six identified by government officials in June.

Leung made the apology before attending a public function. "There was negligence [when I handled] the incident, … and I apologise to the people of Hong Kong for that," Leung said. "I hope from now on, me, my team and the entire government can work with the society with one heart … and I can with all my energy, serve the people of Hong Kong, and face the challenges."

Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor urged the public to give Leung some leeway to concentrate on policy issues. But he faces pressures from across the political spectrum to appear before the Legislative Council to explain himself. Lawmakers have already voted to request he appear before them, and yesterday at least two Beijing loyalists suggested he must do so.

Leung said in a written statement on Friday that a "lapse of memory" was responsible for his confusion over the structures.

However, he revealed he had ordered the sealing up of a 200 sq ft laundry four months before the chief executive election, after realising that the room had been expanded by the home's previous owner.

Leung did not mention this while running for the top job. But he strongly criticised rival Henry Tang Ying-yen over a luxurious 2,250 sq ft basement at Tang's Kowloon Tong home.

Leung's statement led critics to accuse him of hiding the truth.

But he said yesterday: "I have always been open and frank with the public, and I co-operated with government departments. I even invited the press to take a look at my house. I bought my home 13 years ago, sought professional advice and discovered six or seven additions and alterations. Although some were minor, I still reported them to the Buildings Department."

Leung said he had not been able to discuss the matter for six months because of a legal challenge to his election based on the illegal structures.

Carrie Lam said there was no question about Leung's integrity. "I hope … this matter can end as soon as possible because, as we all know, there are many policy matters that the chief executive must take care of," she said.

However, executive councillor Cheng Yiu-tong, of the Federation of Trade Unions, said Leung should answer any further questions people have.

Lawmaker James Tien Pei-chun, of the Liberal Party, said Leung should appear before Legco. "There are too many suspicious points in his statement," he said.


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liars and crooks
Pff, who cares. It's not like he added another floor or two to his house. Still don't get why it should be illegal to install trellises or glass on ones own house.
hard times !
I wonder how most Hongkongers can excuse this eloquent but whose integrity is in doubt, Chief Executive of Hong Kong, C.Y.Leung since his ascension to the top post in town is largely due to the broke of integrity of Henry Tang who had an illegal basement palace in Kowloon Tong.Now same errors have been found on C.Y.himself and the number of unauthorized structures are more than 10, instead of just 6 found by the Buildings Department officers in last June while inspecting his Peak houses.
It's only your assumption that C.Y. Leung won the CE election over Henry Tang because of the latter's illegal basement palace in Kowloon Tong. Did you forget that Henry Tang also tried to hide his extra marital affairs among other things?
It was the illegal basement that made Henry Tang look deceiving to the public, ruining his integrity. CY came out looking high and mighty as if he had done no wrong. Now we found out that he too has illegal structures and that he actually went on to hid this!! If this was discovered during the election, he would be on the same playing grounds as Henry Tang maybe lower.


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