Pressure mounts on C.Y. Leung over illegal structures

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 27 November, 2012, 6:34pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 27 November, 2012, 7:46pm

he Buildings Department on Tuesday asked Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying to break open a brick wall at his home on The Peak so its inspectors can look behind it for illegal structures.

Leung had the brick wall built in November last year to seal off a 200-sq-ft extension built by the previous owner.

Last Friday, Leung said in a written statement that this area had been expanded by the previous owner.

In a statement on Tuesday, the department said it had to carry out further inspections and asked Leung “to arrange for the opening up of that wall as soon as possible” to allow officers to examine the space.

Buildings officers had found that the wall’s position did not match its location shown on approved building plans during an inspection on June 26.

The department suggested that Leung had repeatedly ignored its requests for information about the wall. It had sent one letter on June 27 and three reminders afterwards, to Leung and his appointed buildings professional, asking for information about the construction and purpose of the wall, it said.

Last Friday, Leung disclosed the existence of several more unauthorised works on top of the six identified by government officials in June.

Leung said he had concealed nothing to do with the illegal structures at his home, which he believes “do not exist any more” after he dealt with the problem. Most of them have been removed, he said.

However, critics – pan-democrats in particular – said Leung’s explanation was inadequate.

They questioned whether he had knowingly suppressed information about illegal structures during his campaign for the chief executive election in March, when he strongly criticised rival Henry Tang Ying-yen over a luxurious 2,250 sq ft basement at Tang’s Kowloon Tong home.