The central government's top representative in Hong Kong yesterday defended Tung Chee-hwa's leadership, saying he had the support of many people. Gao Siren, director of Beijing's Liaison Office, said the suggestion that Mr Tung should 'step up and sit back' would not undermine the chief executive's credibility. He was commenting on an editorial in Friday's South China Morning Post, suggesting Mr Tung should concentrate on promoting Hong Kong, leaving the day-to-day management of the city in the hands of another official. After arriving in Beijing for the National People's Congress (NPC), Mr Gao said: 'The Post has only expressed its views. But I think other people of Hong Kong consider him having done a good job and want him to carry on. 'People enjoy freedom of expression in Hong Kong. There are many newspapers in Hong Kong and different media would have different stances on various issues,' he said. 'If a country's economy keeps on expanding, its leader will naturally enjoy the support of the people.' On Friday, the Chief Executive's office said Mr Tung had demonstrated 'clear leadership' and was set to lead Hong Kong out of its economic woes. Tsang Hin-chi, a Hong Kong delegate of the NPC's standing committee, said there was no need for Mr Tung to appoint a deputy. 'There would be a problem if Mr Tung and his deputy had different views,' said Mr Tsang, who is also the president of the Hong Kong Chinese General Chamber of Commerce.