A school principal has rejected an $85 million lawsuit filed by a former employee who was fired in July this year, saying he cannot understand why legal action has been taken. Pong Wing-yan, head of the Hong Kong Management Association (HKMA) David Li Kwok Po College, was commentating on a writ filed in the high court last month by Peter Marteinson, the former dean of academic affairs and head of the French department. 'I cannot understand the motivation behind the legal action,' Dr Poon said. Dr Marteinson, 34, a Canadian academic who started working at the school in October 2000, is seeking $35 million for damages to his professional reputation and employability as a teacher in Hong Kong and a further $50 million for punitive damages. In the writ, Dr Marteinson claimed the HKMA College fabricated complaints in relation to his professional conduct as a teacher in the school and that the work atmosphere was characterised by 'jealousy, anti-European racism, the concept of 'face' and 'notions of absolute hierarchy'. EMB and HKMA representatives said they were unable to comment on the matter.