Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Tang's Housing Blues

Chief executive candidate Henry Tang Ying-yen's credibility continues to slide down the drain with the latest revelation he had some illegal structures built in his posh Kowloon Tong homes.

On Monday Ming Pao quoted contractors who once worked inside the home on 7 York Road, saying there was a wine cellar secretly built in a hidden entrance somewhere in the house. It is believed a storage space built underneath the swimming pool was where wine was stored.

There was also a canopy covering a car part at a nearby address on 5A York Road that Tang owned that was deemed illegal, but it was allegedly left by the previous owner more than a decade ago.

At first Tang denied having illegal structures at his homes that he does not currently reside in, and then flip-flopped and later admitted he did.

He even denied there was a cover-up, blaming confusion on a "misunderstanding" in handling media inquiries about it in October.

"As a man, one needs to have shoulders and as a public officer, one needs to have backbone," Tang said Monday.

But how can there be a "misunderstanding"? Either you have illegal structures or you don't. And if you do, admit it, take them down and the issue is over.

In addition Tang still hasn't come clean on the timeline of the construction that happened at the 7 York Road property and if it was his wife Lisa Kuo Yu-chin who commissioned the renovations.

He also couldn't say for sure when he hired a consultant to inspect his properties for unapproved works after senior officials were told in May last year to check their properties to enforce building regulations.

So how is he going to deal with it?

By hiring an "authorized person" to act on his and his wife's behalf in dealing with the Buildings Department.

"Once the demolition is completed, I will give full account to the public," Tang said.

Yet another fiasco Tang is trying to dodge and yet he's doing a bad job and continues to explode in his face.

Doesn't bode well for Hong Kong, does it?

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