Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying is being accused of evading questions from the wider media after doing an exclusive interview with a television broadcaster in which he discussed the student protest and a US$7 million payout from an Australian company, Ming Pao Daily reported.
The interview aired on TVB’s The Record on Sunday, the first time he publicly addressed the two issues.
In a joint statement, the Hong Kong Journalists Association and staff unions from Next Media, Radio Television Hong Kong and Ming Pao criticized Leung for avoiding a press inquiry into issues of grave public concern.
They demanded Leung face the media in a press conference to address the issues.
A spokesman for the Chief Executive Office said it is normal for the chief executive to grant interview requests on an individual basis.
However, Ronald Y.C. Chiu, chairman of the Hong Kong News Executives Association, said Leung should address the issues in a wider forum given their public impact.
In the interview, Leung defended the government’s response to the protest and its decision to cancel planned talks. He also denied any wrongdoing in the reported secret payout from Australian engineering company UGL.
Meanwhile, reporters hoping to get a word out of Leung were left waiting in vain in Lingnan Oriental Hotel in Guangzhou, where he is attending the Pan-Pearl River Forum, after he changed to another location, the report said.
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