• Fri
  • Dec 19, 2014
  • Updated: 12:00am
Leung Chun-ying
NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

It's Leung's turn for some home truths in illegal structure row

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 26 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 26 January, 2013, 4:30am
 

With friends like these, who needs enemies?

That might well have been the question on the lips of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying yesterday as he issued a denial of allegations by a former supporter that he lied over illegal structures at his homes on The Peak.

Twenty-four hours after his accuser-in-chief, Lew Mon-hung, sparked a media frenzy by turning on the man he backed to become leader, Leung took to the airwaves to calm the storm.

Asked on ATV's Newsline if there was any truth to Lew's claim he lied over the illegal structures and considers pan-democrats the "enemy", Leung said: "Not at all … What he said about my homes is not true.'' And on the democrats: "I invite them to breakfasts, lunches and dinners but not all of them turn up. I consider them - I consider all lawmakers - as partners.''

Then, as if to cement his denial, the chief executive went on to reaffirm he aims to become China's first democratically elected leader by seeking a second term in 2017. "That will be my target. But I will need the co-operation of everyone in Hong Kong, including the Legislative Council. I have not changed my mind. Many of the issues and challenges we face will take more than five years to tackle."

Leung's denial will do little to stop his detractors in the pan-democratic camp, who yesterday called for a Legislative Council grilling of both men and the invoking of special powers to do so - a move doomed to fail without the support of Legco's Beijing loyalists.

Meanwhile Lew, erstwhile factory worker and member of the nation's top political advisory body, was in Beijing and standing by the allegations made in an interview with iSun Affairs magazine, whose publisher is Chen Ping, a non-executive director of Pearl Oriental Oil, the listed company of which Lew is deputy chairman and executive director.

Lew, whose nickname is "Dream Bear", says his attack on Leung is in response to an Independent Commission Against Corruption investigation into Pearl Oriental Oil.

The businessman, who fled to Hong Kong from Dongguan in 1973 to clean factory floors, is no stranger to controversy. Born in Taishan , Guangdong, in 1948, he completed his secondary education in 1966 as the Cultural Revolution got under way. He was sent to "serve in villages" in Dongguan in the late 1960s.

In a 2009 interview he said his proudest moment was fleeing to Hong Kong, a thrill-packed six-day journey by land and sea.

The same year Lew - who has a son and two daughters - claimed to have been the victim of a kidnap attempt during a trip to Dongguan, boasting that he outwitted his captors: "There were daggers and a gun pointing at me. But I was never afraid."

A member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, he can't always be relied on to toe the party line.

In 2011, he urged Beijing to investigate the sentencing of Zhao Lianhai, an activist fighting for the rights of melamine-tainted-milk victims on the mainland. Zhao was jailed for 2-1/2 years and later released on medical parole.

Last year, Lew also wrote to Beijing, urging central authorities to look into the death of democracy activist Li Wangyang in a hospital in Hunan . Lew challenged official claims that Li hanged himself and took out full-page advertisements to protest against the provincial government's handling of the case.

Closer to today's fall-out with the man he helped to become king, during the scandal-hit leadership battle between Leung and Henry Tang Ying-yen, Lew described himself as a key adviser and key supporter of Leung. Indeed, in this week's interview with iSun Affairs, he described himself as "the first celebrity" to back the unpopular Leung.

At the peak of the chief executive election race Lew was smeared as a "triad associate'' and described as a "negative asset" for Leung after media disclosures that he and some of Leung's election team members attended a dinner at which a triad-linked businessman known as "Shanghai Boy" was present.

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5

This article is now closed to comments

blue
DreamBear is not reliable. It sounds like a nasty thing to say about CY in retaliation for the ICAC investigating him.
"it makes me sick that Mr Leung state so overtly that he aim for reelection in 2017 "
Even if HK has a very "guided" democracy in 2017 it's a) better than the present situation and b) I guarantee you'll be able to vote CY out of office. He's not Putin!
Anyway I still support CY and want him to continue his work.
freedom hong kong
With all the controversies that our chief executive has created since the ce election in the legislative council, legal community and society as a whole, it makes me sick that Mr Leung state so overtly that he aim for reelection in 2017 as I feel he has a genuine disrepect for overall wishes of Hong Kong people and doing what is best for Hong Kong
mercedes2233
"Lew, .... says his attack on Leung is in response to an Independent Commission Against Corruption investigation into Pearl Oriental Oil."
So the illegal structures are not really the issue, and CY is not the ICAC anyway. DreamBear appears no saint himself. Can we please move on?
metosay
Despite the effort made by our Chief Executive showing his intention to remain in his CE position, Hong Kong people already burnt a lot of energy since 1 July 2012 to tell him that he is not the right candidate that we want. Hong Kong is now in very chaotic situation and it is a cruical moment that our CE should decide what is the best for Hong Kong: should he stay or leave.
mercedes2233
The HK people who protested (I was not one of them) should decide whether the 'chaos' they caused is in the interests of HK, or should they let the Govt do what it is supposed to do.

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