Top cop fits new role

City Talk | Siu Sai-wo 11 Dec 2019

Chris Tang Ping-keung visited Beijing soon after his recent appointment as commissioner of the Hong Kong police, and was invited to attend the flag-raising ceremony at Tiananmen Square too.

His visit was extensively reported in the mainland media, reflecting the importance that was attached to it.

Tang, who read social work at Chung Chi College, is the second Chinese University of Hong Kong graduate to become the head of the police force. The first was Dick Lee Ming-kwai, who was also the first university graduate ever to have been appointed to the top job.

In the past, Tang kept a low profile. He caught public attention when he donned a gas mask to command an operation in the front line recently.

Subsequently, he spoke to the media often during the operation at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and after he had assumed the commissioner position.

Some have observed that Tang is able to provide prompt responses to pointed questions, with both hard and soft approaches, and is willing to go to lengths to elaborate on his statements.

Before rising to the top echelons of the force, Tang had worked in the front lines, so he possesses "on the ground" experience and understands the complexities involved.

In recent years, he had focused on management work and has also been relentless in promoting the conservation of police heritage, including the preservation of the historic Peak Police Station.

But as he has taken up the top position in the police force in a tumultuous situation, conservation projects have to give way for now. One can only hope that social conditions will return to normal soon so these projects can pick up steam again.

Siu Sai-wo is publisher of Sing Tao Daily

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