High Tide (July 23rd 2015) – Daily political round up

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Pro-est blocks motion to probe lead-in-water case; Large scale data blunder in TMH; Member details of Scholarism leaked. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher


Politics (Gov’t & LegCo)

Pro-est lawmakers reject invoking special power to probe lead-in-water issues.
– Members of the Panel on Housing endorsed a non-binding motion moved by FTU’s Aron Kwok to urge the Government to draw a water-tests timetable and to provide clean water to residents affected by excessive lead found in drinking water
– Another motion moved by Democratic Party’s Wu Chi-wai to invoke the LegCo’s special power to probe the case, however, was blocked (ch) by 10 to 8

IPCC upholds initial ruling on baton assault case.
– The Independent Police Complaints Council decided to uphold its initial ruling that police superintendent Franklin Chu assaulted protesters with his baton during the Occupy movement
– The police watchdog will hold further meeting to decide whether to submit the report to CY Leung or to take other actions regarding to the case
– Former IPCC member Eric Cheung said there was no law demanding the CE to make a decision based on the police watchdog’s report and previous cases tended to be left unsettled
– Chueng worried chance was slim that Chu, who will retire today, would face any punishment

Lau Kong-wah maintains silence over ‘removal‘ of predecessor.
– New Secretary for Home Affairs and former DAB vice-chairman Lau Kong-wah said he was glad to have the trust of the central government and the CE while declining to comment on the departure of his predecessor Tsang Tak-sing
– LegCo president Jasper Tsang said (ch) he did not think his younger brother would take the initiative to step down
– ExCo member Regina Ip said the personnel changes could be a preparation for CY Leung to seek a second term in office.
– Liberal Party’s James Tien mocked (ch) CY Leung – again – by claiming that “people would naturally get into the kitchen and help no matter how hot it is – if the chef is competent”

Political (General)

Suspects deny charges for wounding former Ming Pao editor Kevin Lau.
– Two suspects were reportedly offered HKD100,000 each to slash former Ming Pao chief editor Kevin Lau
– The duo claimed not to know Lau and denied charges for causing grievous bodily harm and for stealing a motorbike
– Lau was attacked by two men on the morning of Feb 26, 2014, during which he suffered cuts to his left shoulder, back and both legs

Liver data blunder in Tuen Mun Hospital put almost 10000 patients under risk.
– A liver data blunder (ch) in Tuen Mun Hospital, of which over 9400 patients were affected, became the latest and one of the most large scale medical flaws in Hong Kong
– It was reported that the hospital purchased an equipment to record patients’ Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) to test their liver functions but the reference ranges were wrongly set
– About 4600 male patients had their readings overestimated, among which 1400 had passed away
– Secretary for Food and Health “expressed deep concern” about the incident and apologised to the patients

Scholarism’s internet accounts hacked by Chinese online army.
– Scholarism reported (ch) that a Chinese hackers’ group known as “Falcon of the Orient” had stolen details of its members and volunteers over the past four years from its Google account
– Meanwhile, the Home Affairs Department was said to have suggested the student group to stay away from a district youth seminar on democracy despite initial invitation from the organiser

Fallen tree was set to be cut a year ago but was held off by local opposition.
– It was reported that a century-old banyan tree that collapsed during yesterday’s rainstorm was meant to be removed a year ago
– Central and Western district councillor Stephen Chan revealed that the Highways Department suggested removing the tree a year ago but backed down after local residents objected the plan
– The district council will hold a special meeting on July 30 to discuss the issue
– Two people injured by the tree were in stable condition
HT talked with Victor Ng from the Liberal Party as he revealed a plan to set up a Mid-levels patrol squad

Lamma residents slam HKD25m bike racks.
– About 300 bike racks that were newly set up failed to impress residents in the Lamma Island as they blasted (ch) the high cost and the design of the racks
– It was said that the project, which was proposed by DAB district councillor Yu Lai Fan, was not practical as each rack could only keep one bike while they should have been linked up to save space
– The project also costed HKD24.8m – approximately HKD80,000 per rack – with a 24% budget overrun