As she prepares to complete her first year in office as Hong Kong’s top leader, Chief Executive, Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor remarked recently that she’s been enjoying her work so much that “a month feels like a day.”
However, according to government sources, her anniversary celebrations on July 1 will not be marked by pomp and circumstance and Lam will not crow about her work achievements.
Lam will not sum up her achievements in the past year by publishing a “Report on the Work of the Current-term Government”, breaking from the practice set by her predecessor Leung Chun-ying during his time in office.
It is because, the sources say, Lam already issued a 5,500-word written note to all Legislative Council members last month outlining the progress of her various policy initiatives, not to mention the fact that her next Policy Address is only about four months away.
Given this, there is simply no need to report on government work again on July 1, Lam feels, according to sources.
During his term in office, former chief executive CY Leung would from time to time publish reports on government work to summarize the ‘achievements’ of his administration, such as coping with the issue of mainland pregnant women giving birth in Hong Kong and imposing export ban on infant formula so as to secure sufficient supply for local parents.
Lam has no intention of following suit.
Instead, apart from attending a flag-raising ceremony and a reception event, in line with the established practice, to celebrate the 21st anniversary of the handover, all Lam has planned to do on July 1 would be to invite local elite students to a gathering at the Government House.
In particular, government sources say, the authorities would like to select outstanding students who have represented Hong Kong in international competitions and won awards, and then invite these students to a gathering at Lam’s official residence. It is said that so far more than a hundred elite students have already agreed to attend the event at Government House on July 1.
Looking at the plan, one shouldn’t be surprised at Lam’s idea to invite distinguished young people to a gathering on the first anniversary of her time as chief executive.
It is because ever since she took office, youth affairs have remained on the very top of her policy agenda.
For instance, shortly after she had been sworn in, Lam immediately proposed to substantially increase government expenditure on education.
Moreover, she introduced measures to allow young people to volunteer for membership in several governmental advisory committees. And let’s also bear in mind that on March 28 this year, Lam elevated the former Commission on Youth to a higher-level Youth Development Commission, with Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung Kin-chung placed in charge as chairman.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on June 8
Translation by Alan Lee
[Chinese version 中文版]
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