Hong Kong Law & Crime

Corruption watchdog ICAC rated less popular than police in HKU poll

The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), Hong Kong’s corruption watchdog, has been rated least popular among Hong Kong’s disciplinary forces in a University of Hong Kong poll.

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Results for the past eight rounds of polling. Photo: HKUPOP screenshot.

The figures released on Tuesday by the University put the net satisfaction rate of the ICAC at 30.1 per cent, lowest among the nine disciplinary forces. The bottommost position was long held by the police force.

The net satisfaction rate for the police force was at 38.3 per cent, the highest since the pro-democracy Occupy protests in 2014 when satisfaction rate was at 20.9 per cent. The police force’s satisfaction rating rose ever since.

The Fire Services Department continues to top the chart.

The survey interviewed 1,000 people over the phone between November 21 to 24. The University of Hong Kong regularly conducts polls on public satisfaction with Hong Kong’s disciplinary forces once every six months.

Calls for resignation

Democratic Party lawmaker Lam Cheuk-ting, who was an investigator at the ICAC, said he was “saddened to see the ICAC’s 40 years of globally established reputation come under threat.” He called for the resignation of ICAC commissioner Simon Peh Yun-lu. Lam blamed Peh for destroying the public’s confidence in the Commission, citing incidents that happened under Peh’s watch such as the removal of Rebecca Li Bo-lan as acting Head of Operations.

Li was involved in investigations into the Chief Executive’s controversial HK$50m payment from Australian firm UGL.

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Lam Cheuk-ting (left) and Simon Peh (right). Photo: Apple Daily.

Lam also criticised former ICAC commissioner Timothy Tong Hin-ming. Tong previously came under investigation in 2013 over lavish expenditure while he was the head of the corruption watchdog. Criminal charges against Tong were dropped earlier this year due to insufficient evidence.

Corruption watchdog ICAC rated less popular than police in HKU poll