Bit by bit the jigsaw is being assembled, but key pieces of the Laurence Leung puzzle still appear missing, and may always be. Chief Secretary Anson Chan Fang On-sang sought to reassure legislators yesterday that the Government had not lied or tried to mislead Legco. She stuck to the line that personal and employment matters between an officer and the Secretary for the Civil Service are confidential and should remain so unless the officer concerned consents to disclosure. This 'unwritten rule' is regarded as being crucial to the good management of the civil service under normal circumstances. But these were not normal circumstances. Mr Leung was not a rank-and-file civil servant but a man in one of the most sensitive and responsible posts in the administration. The Government has been at pains to point to the offences which lay behind the decision that he had to go. But if he was held to have betrayed the trust of the Government and the people of Hong Kong should he have still qualified for such protection? In any case, it may be asked whether it is good policy to have tacit rules for civil servants which mean that, however dishonorable their conduct, they are allowed to leave office ostensibly without a stain on their character - so long as they go quietly. They are, after all, public servants, and the public may well feel it has a right to know if its servants behave badly. The Government's difficulties in this whole affair have been aggravated above all by its initial prevarication. That has produced an inevitable suspicion that the argument for confidentiality, advanced again by Mrs Chan yesterday, is really an attempt to keep awkward facts hidden. Certainly, it is not in the public interest for details of security procedures or ICAC operations to be revealed. But that is not a reason for the refusal to disclose a full and textual list of what the investigation into Mr Leung uncovered. It is not difficult to obliterate the sensitive elements of such a report, enabling the rest of the contents to be shown to satisfy the public that it has been told the whole story in the best possible way. Until that satisfaction is delivered, questions will remain.