Spotlight to shine again on former ICAC boss
The furore over former graft-buster chief Timothy Tong Hin-ming's corruption case has been almost forgotten in a summer that saw two executive councillors and two political assistants quit over the latest string of political scandals. But it won't take long for Tong to return to the spotlight: the Legislative Council's public accounts committee has almost reached a verdict, after a series of public hearings which uncovered Tong's extravagant spending when he helmed the Independent Commission Against Corruption. "We have exhausted our vocabularies to find the sternest words for the verdict," said one lawmaker compiling the report, expected to be released by October. But the case is hardly over: a Legco select committee will also start inviting witnesses around that time, and the focus is likely to turn to Tong's connection with the liaison office.
Justice secretary charms his peers
Health minister Ko Wing-man may be the most popular top official in the eyes of the public, but it is Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung who is most popular among those within the government, a civil service source has revealed. Yuen, 49, the only bachelor in Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying's cabinet, was well received by his colleagues, "notably those who are not married", the source said. Yuen said he hoped for more laughter in the office. "I find myself fortunate to be able to have open, honest and frank discussions with civil service colleagues," the government legal adviser told the latest Civil Service Newsletter. "But I do notice that colleagues here do not randomly crack jokes like we used to in private practice. It is probably because I am around, but please do so."
Development chief says thank you, not goodbye
The last two weeks were probably the darkest days in development minister Paul Chan Mo-po's political career. He found himself embroiled in a conflict-of-interest scandal, lost his aide in another scandal of the same nature, and then got injured in a car crash. Given the recent spate of bad news for Chan, one might have thought he would have deemed it time to step down. "On the day Chan returned to work after he was discharged from the hospital, he brought us fruit hampers," said a person who works alongside the minister. "We thought it was farewell fruit, but it turned out he was staying. He only wanted to thank us for showing concern about the accident."