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  • Dec 29, 2014
  • Updated: 11:16am
Leung Chun-ying
NewsHong Kong

Leung may face vote of no confidence over structures

New threat to chief executive as fury over illegal structures continues, despite his protests he 'hid nothing' and that problem 'no longer exists'

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 27 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 27 November, 2012, 6:56am

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying insisted yesterday he concealed nothing over the illegal structures at his home, which he believes "do not exist any more" after he dealt with the problem.

But his latest defence last night failed to convince lawmakers and a motion of no confidence could be tabled as early as next week.

Last Friday, Leung issued a 14-page statement in which he revealed for the first time that he had sealed a 200 sq ft room - one of 10 illegal structures at his houses on The Peak - four months before the chief executive election in March.

Questions were raised over Leung's integrity as he apparently knew of the illegal extension in October last year and sealed it the following month. He had previously claimed he had no illegal structure. He also denied an Apple Daily report in June that he had the illegal extension.

Speaking to the media twice last night, Leung insisted he had concealed nothing.

"My understanding at the time was that once I had dealt with the illegal structures, they existed no more," he said, referring to his project to seal the room. "Like many senior officials or prominent figures, their illegal structures are not made public after they have dealt with them."

Architectural professor Patrick Lau Sau-shing, a former lawmaker, said Leung had not properly dealt with the problem. "He should be filling or demolishing the unauthorised extension with consent from the Buildings Department," he said.

Paul Tse Wai-chun, an independent lawmaker seen as close to the central government's liaison office, said he would press ahead with plans to propose a motion of no confidence on December 19.

"A murderer cannot hide the body and tell others he did not commit a crime," he said.

Tse said it was an integrity issue as Leung, who had illegal structures in his own house, attacked rival candidate Henry Tang Ying-yen's luxurious 2,250 sq ft basement during the chief election campaign.

"These accusations are going to accompany him in the coming four or five years. I think he should seriously consider quitting the job," he said.

The Democratic Party said it might file a similar motion a week earlier if Leung could not clear the doubts in the Legislative Council.

Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said the party would not rule out going further and seeking to impeach the chief executive. "If more evidence emerges to question his credibility, and public sentiments reach a [sufficient] height, it may be time to consider it," he said.

But Tam Yiu-chung, chairman of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, disagreed that Leung had deliberately concealed any facts.

"He has apologised for his negligence," he said.

The chance of passing the motion is slim as it requires majority support among both functional constituency and directly elected lawmakers. An impeachment would take even more steps, including a two-thirds majority among lawmakers.

The Buildings Department yesterday sent surveyors to inspect the unauthorised works at Leung's home in Peel Rise. They include a visitors' washroom, a shower room and a sauna room converted from a storeroom and an extended area of 200 sq ft left by the previous owner at No 4 together with a retractable canopy and a movable cabinet at No 5.



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Since everybody is equal before the law, I sure hope the Buildings Department and our newspapers(including the SMCP) will go after the illegal structures, found on almost every building in the New Territories, with the same fervor. Oh, my bad. They won't, because that might **** off the almighty K U K.
The man spent decades at the top of the surveying profession and it is surveyors who are sent to inspect his property for UBW for they are the experts capable of detecting them, as he is or was. He deliberately concealed his many UBW in the face of high-profile UBW revelations affecting others in positions of power and notwithstanding specific calls to them to 'fess up. Clearly, he considered himself above the law. His lies and obfuscation are an embarrassment to Hong Kong and an insult to our collective intelligence. He must go.
The rule of law must apply to everyone equally but one has to question the law if there is no redeeming benefit to the public. The control of building in Hong Kong is over due for a review and rationalization.


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