Exco's Franklin Lam backs off suing Apple Daily
Executive Councillor Franklin Lam Fan-keung has decided not to sue Apple Daily for an article that said he was biased against migrants - a claim the paper has admitted was untrue.
The beleaguered executive councillor said yesterday "many reporters constantly ask me if I will pursue legal action against Apple Daily. I have decided not to bring up this matter again. I hope this kind of false claim will not appear again in the future.
"Circulation and sensational stories should not override the objectives of Hong Kong newspapers. Hong Kong should respect the legal principle - 'innocent until proven guilty', and the media should uphold its professionalism."
Apple Daily splashed the accusation against Lam on its front page on January 13, quoting him as saying: "Hongkongers have a lot of housing demands and don't have flats. So I am totally against the migrants.''
At a press conference held to release a housing survey on the same day, Lam clarified he made no such discriminatory remarks and insisted everyone was a first-class citizen.
Apple's chief editor, Cheung Kim-hung, admitted the report was wrong as its reporters were given the wrong information.
Last November, Lam was criticised for selling two luxury properties in the Mid-Levels days before a government crackdown on home prices.