Disqualify dem over Legco probe, says CY

Top News | Phoenix Un and Stella Wong 18 May 2017

Leung Chun-ying said yesterday that pan-democrat Kenneth Leung Kai- cheong should be recused from a Legislative Council committee investigating him over the HK$50 million payment he received from Australian engineering firm UGL.

This comes after Leung was accused of interfering in the select committee after the Chief Executive Office made amendments to a document submitted by Holden Chow Ho-ding, who is also committee vice chairman, to the Legco secretariat.

He has sued Kenneth Leung of the Professional Commons for defamation, filing the writ on March 6 in the High Court.

Leung said last night it was not suitable for Kenneth Leung to remain a member due to "direct and huge" conflicts of interest, adding the accountancy-sector lawmaker had accused him of being under investigation by the ICAC and international tax authorities.

Leung said the lawmaker was biased on tax issues, which is one of the four investigation tracks of the select committee.

"I have reviewed the minutes of the committee's meetings and found no sign of him declaring conflict of interest about being the defendant in the defamation case," Leung said. "This has already caused the problem of not declaring [the interest] in the past few meetings."

But Kenneth Leung said his case was discussed at the first select committee meeting on March 3, adding committee chairman Paul Tse Wai- chun found no problem with his involvement.

The select committee should expel Chow, not him, he said.

"It doesn't need concrete evidence to sue a person, and any legislator can be sued for any criticisms spoken outside the chamber. This could be a speculative lawsuit, and if this precedence emerges, no investigative committee can operate," Kenneth Leung said.

Federation of Trade Unions lawmaker Wong Kwok-kin called for the dismissal of the whole select committee after four pan-democrat members revealed what was discussed in a closed-door meeting Monday on the Chow amended document.

Hong Kong First's Claudia Mo Man-ching will move to censure Chow for misbehavior in the House Committee meeting tomorrow to try to disqualify him as a legislator.

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