Date
19 September 2017
The Civil Aviation Department headquarters in Chek Lap Kok airport has a private restroom and shower for the agency's chief built with unauthorized funds, according to a government audit.
Photo: http://dev.urbanairdesign.com
The Civil Aviation Department headquarters in Chek Lap Kok airport has a private restroom and shower for the agency's chief built with unauthorized funds, according to a government audit. Photo: http://dev.urbanairdesign.com

CAD told to explain suspected misuse of government funds

Hong Kong civil aviation authorities made improper purchases worth tens of millions of dollars, including an airport runway monitor that has proven useless.

The Audit Commission said government money was misused in these deals, Apple Daily reported Friday.

Hong Kong lawmakers approved HK$101.4 million (US$13.07 million) in 1996 for the high-speed runway monitor developed by United States defense company Raytheon.

The Civil Aviation Department (CAD) said at the time that the system could help control runway traffic by allowing the two runways to operate it independently.

However, the terrain made it impossible for such operation, government auditors said, citing independent consultant reports from 1990 and 1994.

The system has been suspended since 2005 and CAD has been relying on expectations a fix can be found, they said.

Gary Fan, a member of the Legco finance committee, accused CAD of lacking moral integrity and of deceiving the legislature.

He demanded a detailed explanation and said all CAD funding requests will be subjected to tougher scrutiny.

Auditors also said CAD misused public funds on a new HK$1.99 billion building by using part of the money to buy equipment and build facilities without approval from the government.

The spending included HK$64.54 million for security and electronic systems, 143 large-screen TVs, a TV wall and a personal restroom and shower for the CAD chief’s office.

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TL/AC/RA

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