EPD respects employees' rights and strongly refutes misleading allegations

     In response to media reports alleging that an employee was interdicted from duty for declaration signing matters, the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) today (April 23) issued the following clarification:
     The employee submitted three declarations in total, but irrelevant wording was written in the signature box each time. Taking into consideration various factors and the situation, the EPD interdicted the employee concerned under the Public Service (Administration) Order as he had failed to return a duly signed declaration by the stipulated deadline without reasonable explanation. The EPD noted that allowing the employee to continue discharging the duties and power of his position may go against the public's interest. The Administration is following up cases involving officers refusing to sign declarations in accordance with relevant regulations.
     The EPD issued an interdiction letter to the employee concerned at 9am on April 12 and read the content of the letter to him, clearly stating that he would not be allowed to enter the office area after packing and leaving the office with his personal belongings. The department gave him a whole day (from 9am to 5.20pm) to pack his personal belongings. He also noted that the department would arrange for the delivery of his unpacked personal belongings to his home. As he had too many personal belongings left unpacked, it took time for the department to follow-up.
     On April 21 morning, the employee appeared outside the office and requested to enter the office to get back his medicine. The staff of the EPD and the police officers on site advised him to provide the details of where his medicine was stored so as to help him retrieve the medicine. However, he refused.
     On April 22 morning, the employee tried to enter the office again, claiming that he needed to retrieve his residence key left in the office. The building security guard and the EPD staff offered to retrieve the key for him according to his instruction, but he refused.
     The EPD deeply regrets that someone deliberately confuses and misleads the public, making people think that the EPD has ignored the rights of the employee concerned.

Ends/Friday, April 23, 2021
Issued at HKT 17:08