Leung Chun-ying

CY has a date with Legco

Lawmakers to question chief executive over illegal structures row for at least 90 minutes

PUBLISHED : Friday, 07 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 07 December, 2012, 3:26am

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying is set for a grilling lasting at least 90 minutes in the Legislative Council on Monday about illegal structures in his home.

Legco house committee chairman Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen, speaking after a meeting with Chief Secretary Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor yesterday, announced that a question-and-answer session would be held at 5pm on Monday.

It is scheduled for an hour-and-a-half but Andrew Leung said he had asked for more time.

The embattled chief executive has dragged his feet amid calls to face lawmakers in person since he issued a 14-page written statement on the illegal structures two weeks ago.

A survey conducted by the Democratic Party found that almost 60 per cent of people polled believed he had concealed facts. One key question is why he chose not to disclose an illegal extension in the basement at 4 Peel Rise when he showed reporters around the property in June.

Although he was made aware that the extension was not legal as early as last year, Leung disclosed it only in last month's statement, drawing criticism he "cheated" in the chief executive election by attacking rival Henry Tang Ying-yen for his 2,250 sq ft basement.

Democratic Party lawmaker Sin Chung-kai said a motion of no confidence would be moved as scheduled on Wednesday.

"There is obvious evidence that Leung concealed illegal structures in his home," he said.

Fellow lawmaker Wu Chi-wai said that among 687 people the party interviewed in the past two weeks, 40 per cent supported the motion and about 59 per cent believed Leung had concealed facts.

Leung did not respond directly to questions about his illegal structures yesterday.

Speaking at a Foreign Correspondents' Club luncheon, he said his cabinet had "worked as a great team" over the past five months. He said: "We are seeing new plans being made.

"It is hard work [with] a lot of pressure and challenges, but I find the work rewarding, and most of the time enjoyable."

Leung also stressed the importance for the government to communicate with people about the need for "internal diplomacy" with the mainland.