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Press Releases

Government announces senior appointments

The Government announced today (Tuesday) that the Central People's Government has, on the nomination and recommendation of the Chief Executive, appointed Mrs Lily Yam Kwan Pui-ying as a Principal Official in the post of Secretary for the Environment and Food.

The Government also announced the following postings of senior officers:

* Mrs Rita Lau Ng Wai-lan, currently Director of Urban Services, will become Director of Food and Environmental Hygiene with effect from January 1, 2000;

* Mr Paul Leung Sai-wah will become Director of Leisure and Cultural Services with effect from January 1, 2000. Mr Leung has recently vacated the post of Principal Representative of Economic and Trade Affairs in Tokyo; and

* Mrs Helen Yu Lai Ching-ping, currently Director of Regional Services, will become Head of a Task Force on Building Safety and Preventive Maintenance with effect from mid-February 2000.

The Government will establish a new institutional framework on January 1, 2000. The objectives are to co-ordinate municipal services as well as leisure and cultural services currently managed and provided by the two provisional municipal councils, and to improve work on food safety and environmental hygiene. The new institutional framework includes a new Environment and Food Bureau responsible for policy matters concerning food supply and food safety, environmental hygiene, environmental protection, conservation and agriculture and fisheries. The Environment and Food Bureau will oversee three departments, namely Environmental Protection Department, Agriculture and Fisheries Department and a new Food and Environmental Hygiene Department. The Home Affairs Bureau, to be underpinned by a new Leisure and Cultural Services Department, will assume overall policy responsibility for leisure and cultural services.

Commenting on the appointment of Mrs Lily Yam Kwan Pui-ying, the Chief Executive, Mr Tung Chee Hwa, said, "With her leadership and extensive experience in public management, Mrs Yam is well suited to serve as the first Secretary for the Environment and Food. Mrs Yam will be tasked with an important mission. Apart from strengthening and promoting policies on environmental hygiene and food safety, she will also have to co-ordinate the work of various departments with a view to ensuring their effective operation under the new institutional framework."

Speaking on the appointment of heads of the two new departments, the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Anson Chan, said, "Mrs Rita Lau and Mr Paul Leung are both veteran Administrative Officers with rich experience in public administration. I am confident that they will lead the two new departments effectively."

Because of the above re-organisation, Planning, Environment and Lands Bureau will be re-named Planning and Lands Bureau with effect from January 1, 2000. In order to conduct a comprehensive review of the policies and enforcement action on building safety and preventive maintenance, the Planning and Lands Bureau will establish a Task Force in early 2000. Led by Mrs Helen Yu Lai Ching-ping, the Task Force will propose improvement measures later in 2000.

"Improving building safety is an important policy objective and a priority task. The fact that the Administration is setting up a task force in Planning and Lands Bureau and appointing Mrs Helen Yu as head of this task force fully reflect our concern over the problem and our determination to improve the situation. As a veteran Administrative Officer and former Director of Buildings, Mrs Yu will certainly be able to rise to the challenge of this important and pressing task," said the Chief Secretary for Administration.

The following are biographical notes on the four officers:

Lily Yam Kwan Pui-ying

Aged 53, Mrs Yam joined the Administrative Service of the Government in July 1969 and rose to her present rank of Director of Bureau in March 1999.

Mrs Yam has served in various government offices and statutory bodies, including Education and Manpower Branch, Civil Service Branch, Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority, Central Policy Unit, Secretariat for Standing Commission on Civil Service Salaries and Conditions of Service and Transport Department. For personal reasons, Mrs Yam left Government from 1973 to 1984, during which she served for nine years in the Independent Commission Against Corruption.

Senior positions held by Mrs Yam in recent years include: Secretary of ICAC Review Committee (March 1994 - January 1995), Chairman of the Administrative Officer Recruitment Board (early 1995), Commissioner for Transport (July 1995 - March 1997) and Commissioner for Independent Commission Against Corruption (April 1997- July 1999). She was appointed a Principal Official during July 1997 to July 1999. She has been heading the Task Force on Re-organisation of Municipal Services since July 1999.

Lau Ng Wai-lan

Aged 46, Mrs Lau joined the Administrative Service of the Government in October 1976 and rose to her present rank of Administrative Officer Staff Grade A in January 1999.

Mrs Lau has served in various bureaux and departments over the years, including Social Welfare Department, Education Department, the former City and New Territories Administration and Civil Service Branch. Senior positions held in recent years include: Commissioner, Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority (1992 - 1995); Deputy Secretary of the former Recreation and Culture Branch (1995 - 1998) and Deputy Secretary of Information Technology and Broadcasting Bureau (1998 - July 1999). Mrs Lau has been Director of Urban Services since July 1999.

Paul Leung Sai-wah

Aged 52, Mr Leung joined the Government as an Executive Officer in 1971. He was appointed an Administrative Officer in 1973 and rose to his present rank of Administrative Officer Staff Grade B1 in January 1993.

Senior positions held by Mr Leung in recent years include: Deputy Regional Secretary (Hong Kong and Kowloon) in the former City and new Territories Administration (1987 - 1989); Deputy Secretary for the Civil Service (1989 - 1991); Deputy Secretary in the former Recreation and Culture Branch (1991 - 1994); Secretary-General of Standing Commission on Civil Service Salaries and Conditions of Service (1994 - 1995) and Deputy Secretary for Transport (1995 - 1997). He was Principal Representative of Economic and Trade Affairs in Tokyo from September 1997 to December 1999.

Helen Yu Lai Ching-ping

Aged 58, Mrs Yu joined the Government as an Executive Officer in June 1965. She joined the Administrative Service in August 1968 and rose to her present rank of Administrative Officer Staff Grade A in February 1995.

As member of the Administrative Service, Mrs Yu has served in various policy bureaux and departments. Previous postings include: Deputy Director of Urban Services (1984 - 1989); Deputy Director of the former Hospital Services Department (1989 - 1990); Deputy Secretary for Health and Welfare (1990 - 1993); Secretary-General of the former Office of Members of the Legislative Council (1993 - 1994); Director of Buildings (1994 - 1996) and Director of Education (1996 - 1998). She has been Director of Regional Services since November 1998.

Tuesday, December 28, 1999