The daughter of a former minister has recalled her struggle in coming to terms with the public criticism levelled at her mother, saying she empathised with the chief executive's daughter - who sparked concern for her well-being after photos of what appeared to be a slashed wrist appeared on her Facebook page.
Cynthia Ip, the 24-year-old daughter of former security minister Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee, said the pictures posted by Leung Chun-ying's daughter Chai-yan, 22, reminded her of her unhappy experiences growing up.
In 2003, the senior Ip came in for fierce criticism for pushing the government's ill-fated national security bill in 2003. "I was only 12, 13 years old so I didn't have as much access to social media platforms," she said. "But anyone would be unhappy if his or her parent were criticised.
"I had arguments with schoolmates on current affairs, and was particularly saddened when I overheard someone calling my mum 'Broom-head' when we were shopping at Times Square," she recalled, referring to a nickname given to Regina Ip because of her hairstyle.
"I decided then to step away from things I could not control."
Leung Chun-ying's UK-based elder daughter Chai-yan posted the photographs on Tuesday.
The chief executive was flying to Britain when the post, open to the public, came to light.
Yesterday, he attended the graduation of his younger daughter, Leung Chung-yan, at Cambridge University. He later uploaded a picture onto his blog of him, his wife and their three children. He returns to Hong Kong tonight.
The incident has raised questions about journalistic ethics. To Yiu-ming, assistant professor at Baptist University's journalism department, argued reports were in the public interest as Chai-yan is related to a top official.