Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, who has been accused of using his influence to get airport security rules bypassed for his daughter, a charge which he denied, is now facing scrutiny in connection with internship opportunities secured by the young woman in the past.
Citing an article in the latest issue of Next Magazine, Apple Daily reported Thursday that Leung’s younger daughter, Leung Chung-yan, worked in several top banks and other institutions as an intern — in some cases, while she was still a secondary student.
It is suspected that she got the much-coveted opportunities due to her father’s clout.
According to her resume once put on professional networking site LinkedIn, Leung Chung-yan had been an intern at least eight high-profile institutions, including JPMorgan Chase, HSBC, Credit Suisse, Hang Seng Bank and Asia Society.
Asia Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among peoples, leaders and institutions of Asia and the United States.
It was found that Leung Chung-yan was only a high school student when she worked at JPMorgan in 2010.
As the US bank normally accepts only university students as interns, it is suspected that the Leung daughter may have received some special treatment.
Leung took office as Hong Kong’s chief executive in July 2012.
A year after taking the top post, Leung named Fang Fang, JPMorgan’s former CEO of investment banking for China, as a member of the Commission on Strategic Development.
The appointment came even as Fang was being investigated by US authorities and Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption over his role in JPMorgan’s hiring of the offspring of some Chinese government officials, the report noted.
As for Asia Society, chairman of its Hong Kong branch Ronnie Chan Chi-chung, who is also chairman of Hang Lung Group, was one of the most prominent supporters of Leung when the latter ran for the post of chief executive in 2012.
In August 2012, while Leung Chung-yan was working at Hang Seng Bank as intern, the bank’s then-CEO Margaret Leung Ko May-yee was appointed by CY Leung as a member of the “Independent Commission on Remuneration for Members of the Executive Council and the Legislature, and Officials under the Political Appointment System”.
All this suggests that some favors were being returned by city’s top leader, Apple Daily said.
Margaret Leung is now a deputy chairman and managing director of Chong Hing Bank.
Hang Seng Bank said it hired 140 interns in 2012, including Leung Chung-yan, Stand News reported on Wednesday.
The bank said all recruitments are handled by its human resources department under procedures, without the management’s involvement. Recruitments depend on candidates’ academic performance and experience, it said.
Asia Society said Leung Chung-yan had served as a volunteer in the organization, and that she was not an intern.
Ivan Choy, senior lecturer, Government and Public Administration Department of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said the chief executive’s chances of securing a second term have dimmed given the suspicions that his family members took advantage of his position to secure some benefits.
Beijing is likely to keep this matter in mind before it picks its preferred candidate for the 2017 Hong Kong chief executive election, Choy said.
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