Lawmakers have rejected a call to investigate accusations that chief-executive-elect Leung Chun-ying suggested using riot police and tear gas in 2003 to quell protests against controversial security legislation. The Legislative Council yesterday voted down a motion to appoint a committee to look into the claims made by Leung's former rival Henry Tang Ying-yen in the campaign's closing days. The panel was also to have probed Tang's claim that Leung wanted to cut short the licensing period of Commercial Radio after being criticised by radio hosts. Tang claimed Leung made the remarks in closed-door Executive Council meetings. Leung has denied the allegations. Legco voted 18-29 against the motion, put forward by Labour Party chairman Lee Cheuk-yan. Opponents of the motion included Tang supporters - lawmakers Jeffrey Lam Kin-fung and Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen - along with legislators of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong and the Federation of Trade Unions, who backed Leung. Secretary for Security Ambrose Lee Siu-kwong opposed the investigation, saying it 'will not only seriously breach the confidentiality principle of the Executive Council and deal a blow to the effective operation of the Exco, but also waste considerable manpower, resources, time and public funding'. 'In the end, it might not be able to find any concrete evidence and make a clear conclusion,' Lee said. Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Greg So Kam-leung, meanwhile, insisted the authorities had handled the licence renewal of the Commercial Radio in 2003 according to procedures. Lee Cheuk-yan said the alleged remarks raised concerns about Leung's integrity and the core values of freedom of the press and of speech and needed further investigation. 'Had [Leung], as the next chief executive, openly lied and cheated people in a chief executive candidates' forum, it would have been a very serious problem of integrity,' he said. It was unreasonable to let confidentiality of top-level government meetings override public interests, the lawmaker said.