Chief executive's office complains after a restaurant chain offers free food to diners who use his name The use of the chief executive's name in a food promotion scheme is apparently too much for the government to swallow. The restaurant chain Steak Expert this week originally promised evening diners an appetiser of five free escargots at any one of its 19 restaurants if they said 'Tung Chee-hwa' to a waiter. But the chain's owner, Andrew Lee Tak-lun, received a phone call early this month from Mr Tung's assistant director in media relations, Mak Kwok-wah, who told him the scheme was inappropriate. 'He told me it's not a good idea, that it's not appropriate. I said I understand and so we changed the code word to my name in a second advertisement,' said Mr Lee yesterday. He said the promotion had been intended to increase spending - something Mr Tung himself had tried to encourage - and was not meant to disparage him. But as the original advertisement had already been sent out, Mr Lee said customers were still given the free baked snails if they said 'Tung Chee-hwa'. The original advert had said: 'From June 9 to June 12, all you need to do is to mention the name of 'Tung Chee-hwa' - there is no need to say anything else - to one of our waiters and we will send you a dish of French escargots in herbs. It's just a simple little game, designed to promote local consumer spending.' Mr Mak yesterday said he had called Mr Lee, but denied exerting any pressure. 'We explained that we didn't think it was appropriate to make use of the name of the chief executive in commercial advertisements to attract customers,' he said. He said Mr Tung was only informed after the restaurant owner had been contacted. Marketing experts are divided over whether the use of Mr Tung's name in a tongue-in-cheek restaurant promotion was crossing the line. Fam Kim Shyan, of City University's department of marketing, believed the chief executive was an ideal candidate to head campaigns to reinvigorate the economy. But Clement Chow Kong-wing, head of the marketing and international business department at Lingnan University, said it was inappropriate. 'If all businesses used the same tactics to promote a product it would soon be out of control.' Gerard Prendergast, of Baptist University's marketing department, said rather than cracking down on businesses showing 'creativity', the government should focus on misleading advertising.