A group of pro-Beijing politicians aims to grill Hong Kong’s leader on her plans to bring the city out of the coronavirus crisis, scheduling a videoconference meeting with her on Monday. Dozens of people, including Hong Kong deputies to the National People’ Congress (NPC), China’s legislature, local delegates to the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), the nation’s top advisory body, and leaders of other prominent mainland Chinese organisations have been invited to attend. A source on Sunday said Beijing’s liaison office in the city had recently suggested lawmakers and delegates provide concrete ideas to the government, rather than bombard the administration with criticism and complaints. “Earlier this month, many in the pro-establishment camp vented their anger at Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, which was quite undesirable to see, thus I believe more communication platforms are being built to encourage rational discussion,” the pro-Beijing source said. The aim of the 90-minute private meeting, organised by lawmaker Chan Yung, is to question Lam on her pandemic policies, according to an invite message seen by the Post . “The fifth wave has continued, and affected our fellow residents’ safety, livelihood, and the city’s economy. We thank Mrs Lam for agreeing with this online meeting,” it said. Finance chief confident of Hong Kong recovery despite ‘stormy quarter’ The city has recorded more than 1 million cases and over 7,000 deaths since the fifth wave erupted in late December. NPC deputy Stanley Ng Chau-pei, president of the Federation of Trade Unions, said he would urge Lam to explain more about the easing of social-distancing rules. “I want to know what the government’s standards are for relaxing the rules, what targets must we achieve before the social-distancing rules can be relaxed,” he said. Earlier this month, Lam said the city’s stringent social-distancing measures would be relaxed in three stages over three months from April 21, if there was no major rebound of confirmed cases. In the first phase, which will begin from April 21, dine-in services will be permitted in restaurants until 10pm with up to four diners per table. Currently, eateries can only offer dine-in services until 6pm with a maximum of two customers per table. Ng also said many NPC and CPPCC delegates had asked Lam to improve communications with them. “We need to know what the government is thinking. Sometimes on the same policies, different senior officials seem to have a different understanding and are doing things differently,” he said. Lam on Friday also revealed that anti-pandemic packages would be distributed to nearly 3 million households starting next month, and each kit would include 20 KN95 masks, 20 rapid tests and two boxes of proprietary traditional Chinese medicine, among other materials. CPPCC delegate Lai Tung-kwok, a former security chief and ex-colleague of Lam, said he hoped the chief executive would further explain how officials would make sure the kits were received by families living in buildings without management committees or owners’ corporations. “Some volunteers said when they went to residential buildings to deliver supplies in the past, the management offices were strict and each volunteer had to be accompanied by a security guard as they went up the building,” he said. “How will this be done in different kinds of buildings next month? What if the residents went to work and there’s no one home?” In February last year, Lam had two separate online meetings with local NPC and CPPCC delegates, with each lasting for two hours. Altogether, the two meetings were attended by more than 110 delegates, together with then chief secretary Matthew Cheung Kin-chung and mainland affairs minister Erick Tsang Kwok-wai. Lai said it was a good sign the chief executive was keeping in touch with the pro-Beijing camp. “We are the bridges linking up different sectors in society, many of us are lawmakers, or are affiliated with political parties or community bodies,” he said. “Now Hong Kong is faced with unprecedented challenges, we need to come together, share what we see … and have a better understanding of the senior officials’ thinking too.” Some NPC or CPPCC delegates, who are also lawmakers, said they could not attend the online session as they had other engagements, such as attending a Legislative Council meeting with environment chief Wong Kam-sing, or taking part in community anti-epidemic work. Others also said they would not join as too many people were expected to attend.