The government has still yet to fill vacancies for two political assistants to top officials, following its latest round of appointments.
The chief executive has appointed 12 undersecretaries and 12 political assistants so far, with an announcement on Friday appointing Raymond So as undersecretary for transport and housing, Kenneth Ng as political assistant to the secretary for constitutional and mainland affairs, and Henry Fung as political assistant to the secretary for labour and welfare.
However, the political assistants to the financial secretary and the secretary for food and health have yet to be appointed.
So, 52, was the Dean of Continuing Education at the Hong Kong Baptist University, before joining the government. He had been working as a scholar at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and Hang Seng Management College.
Ng was a Principal Reporter in the Division of News and Information Services of the TVB news channel, mainly covering political news.
Fung was Assistant Manager with the Hong Kong Tourism Board. His father Ricky Fung was the former secretary general of the Legislative Council.
So and Ng will assume office next Monday, while Fung will assume office on October 9.
“The Government will announce the appointment of the remaining Political Assistants separately,” the government said in a press release.
The rumoured candidates for the remaining two vacancies are both from the media industry.
Apple Ho, deputy director of news and public affairs at Commercial Radio, was the choice for the political assistant to the financial secretary, according to a Hong Kong Economic Times report.
She was mainly covering business news, not political news. The newspaper cited sources as saying that Ho has tendered her resignation to Commercial Radio but it was likely that the process has yet to be completed.
If she is appointed in the future, she will be the third political assistant to the financial secretary who came from a media background, after Frankie Yip and Julian Law.
Meanwhile, RTHK journalist So King-hang has long been rumoured to be the future political assistant to the secretary for food and health.
However, So was still hosting the public broadcaster’s weekly City Forum programme last Sunday. According to media reports Mr So’s candidacy has been held up because it is opposed by the pro-Beijing camp, which finds his chairing of the programme “biassed”.