Former chief executive Tung Chee-hwa may have had mixed feelings about returning to Government House yesterday to receive the Grand Bauhinia Medal from successor Donald Tsang Yam-kuen - who accepted the same award from him four years earlier. Yet the past and current leaders seemed at ease with their change of roles, heaping praise on each other and embracing after Mr Tsang made the presentation. Mr Tung, the first of three people to be honoured with Hong Kong's top award yesterday, received the longest applause of all awardees. In 2002, then chief secretary Mr Tsang was the most senior official to receive the award from Mr Tung. After yesterday's ceremony, the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference vice-chairman said it was his 'life-long honour to be the first chief executive of Hong Kong', and a great honour to receive the Grand Bauhinia Medal. 'I am very thankful to the chief executive, and I am very thankful to Hong Kong citizens,' he said. Asked if he had any tips to give the chief executive, Mr Tung said: 'Mr Tsang is a very outstanding chief executive ... He has done very well. I fully support him.' Praising his predecessor's contributions, Mr Tsang said: 'Mr Tung has selflessly and wholeheartedly worked for Hong Kong. Under his leadership, Hong Kong attained political stability ....' Of his time since standing down, Mr Tung said: 'I was too busy before. Only now do I realise the pleasure of being a grandfather.' The award's other two recipients were Executive Councillor Charles Lee Yeh-kwong and Friends of Hong Kong Association chairman Leo Lee Tung-hai. A total of 265 of 277 awardees attended the ceremony.