Date
17 December 2017
MTR Corp. CEO Jay Walder and chairman Raymond Chi'en say the railway operator has been trying its best to resolve the difficulties. Photo: HKEJ
MTR Corp. CEO Jay Walder and chairman Raymond Chi'en say the railway operator has been trying its best to resolve the difficulties. Photo: HKEJ

MTR chief Walder under mounting pressure to step down

Legislators from both the pan-democratic and pro-establishment camps are calling for the ouster of MTR Corp. chief executive Jay Walder as they blame him for the delays in the cross-border high-speed rail link project, Skypost.hk reported Wednesday.

In fact, some observers believe the government will make Walder a scapegoat to shield Secretary for Transport and Housing Anthony Cheung from the scandal.

Legislator and former chairman of KCRC Michael Tien said Walder should step down for serious dereliction of duty as he failed to monitor the progress of the rail link construction. Walder also made a personal phone call to Cheung, asking him not to disclose the delay to the public, Tien said.

While the Legislative Council could not order Walder to resign under the Powers and Privileges Ordinance, Tien has called on the MTR Corp. board of directors, who are meeting this Friday to discuss the matter, to ask Walder to leave his post.

Former Observatory director Lam Chiu-ying said Walder was being irresponsible by calling the whole incident a matter of miscommunications, adding that his leadership skills are very questionable.

Chan Han-pan, deputy chairman of the Panel on Transport, subcommittee on Matters Relating to Railways, and Tang Ka-piu, of the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions, also said Walder should step down, while panel member Wu Chi-wai from the Democratic Party said he was considering launching a motion of no confidence against Cheung.

Meanwhile, MTR Corp. chairman Raymond Chi’en and Jay Walder have published a statement on several newspapers, saying the railway operator has been trying its best to resolve the difficulties, the report said.

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EL/AC/CG 

Freelance journalist

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