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CE speaks on Independent Review Committee on ICAC's Regulatory Systems and Procedures for handling Official Entertainment, Gifts and Duty Visits (with video)

     Following is the transcript of remarks by the Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung, at a media session at the ground floor lobby of the Office of the Chief Executive at Tamar, this afternoon (May 2):

     Now I will give a gist in English.

     Recent media reports on the handling of official entertainment, gifts and duty visits by the former Commissioner of the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), Mr Timothy Tong, have given rise to wide community concerns. I have therefore decided to establish a four-member Independent Review Committee on ICAC's Regulatory Systems and Procedures for handling Official Entertainment, Gifts and Duty Visits, with the Chairmen of the three advisory committees that oversee the work of ICAC as well as Chairman of the ICAC Complaints Committee as members.

     The Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Corruption of ICAC, Mr Chow Chung-kong, will chair the Independent Review Committee. Members include Chairman of the Corruption Prevention Advisory Committee, Mr Albert Au Siu-cheung; Chairman of the Citizens Advisory Committee on Community Relations, Professor John Leong Chi-yan; and Chairman of ICAC Complaints Committee, Dr Leong Che-hung.

     The terms of reference of the Independent Review Committee are:

(1) To review ICAC's regulatory systems and procedures for handling expenses on official entertainment, gifts and duty visits, including arrangements for application, reimbursement and approval;

(2) To review the compliance of ICAC staff of all ranks during the term of the former Commissioner, ICAC with the regulatory systems and procedures; and

(3) To make recommendation on any measure conducive to improving the above systems and procedures.

     The Independent Review Committee will be responsible to me, and will submit its report to me within four months. The report of the Committee will be released to the public, except any part which may need to be dealt with separately for legal reasons.

Reporter: Two points. Why not bring in a former Commissioner of the ICAC who certainly has a view on this? And secondly, will Mr Tong relieve his responsibility while this is ongoing?

Chief Executive: We believe that it is a better arrangement to have non-official and outstanding members of the community to carry out the work, and that at the same time these four gentlemen who now chair the committees overseeing the work of the ICAC are familiar with the work of the ICAC and therefore will be able to provide me with the necessary results and recommendations expeditiously.

Reporter: What about ... responsibility while this is under way?

Chief Executive: I beg your pardon?

Reporter: What about the question of whether Mr Tong should be relieved of his responsibilities while these matters are being handled?

Chief Executive: Mr Tong is no longer with the ICAC.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Thursday, May 2, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:27


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