Leung accused of misusing power to help daughter at airport

April 07, 2016 11:36
A file photo of Leung Chun-yan (inset, extreme right) with her dad CY Leung and mom Regina Tong (2nd and third from left). The family has been accused of seeking special privileges at the airport. Photo: HKEJ

Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying is being accused of misusing his power as he is said to have instructed airline staff at Hong Kong to do something that is against the airport regulations.

According to an Apple Daily report, Leung allegedly pressured Cathay Pacific Airways staff late last month to go beyond the normal rules and help Leung's daughter with regard to some luggage.

The incident took place as the chief executive's youngest daughter, Leung Chung-yan, 23, was preparing to board a plane for San Francisco on the morning of March 28, a source told the paper.

After she passed through the baggage screening area along with her mother Regina Tong Ching-yi, who was allowed to accompany her daughter in the airport as a "special person", it was found that one of Leung Chung-yan's carry-on bags was missing.

Apparently, the young woman had forgotten to carry it for bagging screening, leaving it outside somewhere in the airport terminal.

Regina Tong then asked Cathay staff to bring it over. However, the staff turned down the request as airport regulations require that departure procedures must be followed all over again if something has to be brought in from outside into a restricted area.

As Tong's "insistence on receiving assistance" did not yield the desired results, the daughter called her dad for help.

CY Leung then called Cathay to demand assistance in retrieving the luggage for his daughter as soon as possible, Apple Daily cited its source as saying.

Leung is said to have even corrected a person who answered the phone to address him as "Chief Executive Leung", rather than just "Mr. Leung".

Informed about the situation, Airport Authority officials decided, after some discussions, to make an exception for Leung’s daughter and bring her left-behind bag into the restricted area.

The staff made it clear to Regina Tong that they were making a special exception, and that normal procedures are different.

Regina Tong then allegedly remarked that "these regulations are not correct".

Describing the whole incident as unfortunate, Carol Ng Man-yee, secretary general of the Hong Kong Cabin Crew Federation, said no one should enjoy any privilege that goes against airport security rules.

CY Leung may have set a bad example, she said, adding that the chief executive owes a detailed explanation.

Dora Lai Yuk-sim, chairwoman of Cathay's cabin crew union, said bringing unaccompanied baggage into the restricted zone can pose a security risk as someone can put dangerous stuff into unattended items. 

A passenger should leave the restricted area, retrieve any forgotten baggage on his or her own and go through the normal screening process again, she said.

Gary Fan Kwok-wai, a lawmaker from the Neo Democrats camp, criticized Leung and his family for seeking special privileges.

Such actions will only make the public very angry, he said.

Apple Daily cited an Airport Authority spokesperson as saying that they are looking into the alleged incident.

Leung's office and Cathay Pacific didn't respond to queries, the paper said.

CY’s wife told airport staff to bring over daughter’s bag: logs (April 7, 2016)

-- Contact us at [email protected]