Donald Tsang

Jailed former Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang sent to hospital with apparent breathing problem

Ex-chief executive, currently serving 20 months in jail, said to be having difficulty breathing

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 13 April, 2017, 6:45pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 April, 2017, 11:27pm

Jailed former Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang Yam-kuen was taken to Queen Mary Hospital on Thursday after complaining again of breathing problems.

Tsang, who is serving a 20-month sentence for misconduct in office, told prison officials he was finding it difficult to breathe in the morning, a source said. He had earlier been sent to the prison’s health clinic for a check-up.

“Medical officers decided to send him to a public hospital in the afternoon for further treatment and examinations due to his asthma condition,” the source said.

The Correctional Services Department refused to comment, citing privacy concerns.

“All correctional institutions contain medical facilities and provide 24-hour basic medical services by doctors from the Department of Health,” a spokeswoman said.

“If necessary, doctors in a prison clinic will transfer a person in custody to a public hospital for medical treatment.”

Tsang,72, was kept in the hospital’s custodial ward while doctors attended to him.

His hospitalisation came less than three weeks after his wife, Selina Tsang Pou Siu-mei, said the former chief executive was recovering from health issues.

“Donald has been recovering gradually from his cough and asthma attack, and he will continue to receive medication to maintain his health,” she wrote in a letter posted on a Facebook group page on March 24.

“He spends most of his time on prayers, as well as reading, writing and staying strong mentally to face the forthcoming litigation in court.”

Hong Kong spirit shone in prayer service for jailed ex-leader Donald Tsang

In February, Tsang was found guilty of concealing negotiations with businessman Bill Wong Cho-bau over a Shenzhen penthouse that he planned to live in after retiring from the government, while his cabinet was approving applications by radio broadcaster Wave Media, of which Wong was a shareholder, between 2010 and 2012.

He was sentenced to 20 months in prison for misconduct in office. He has since appealed against the conviction and sentence and applied for bail, with a hearing set for April 24.

This is the second time Tsang has been taken to hospital while in custody.

On February 19, just a few hours after he first arrived at the Lai Chi Kok Reception Centre – two days ahead of his sentencing – he was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital complaining of breathing issues and chest pain.