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Swearing-in of the New Chief Executive; Legco's Expectations of Donald Tsang; Civil Servants' Pay; Improving Early Education; Clinic Queues for the Elderly (24 Jun 2005)


Hong Kong is officially under new management - at the local level anyway. On the morning of our broadcast Donald Tsang was in Beijing, being sworn in as the SAR's 2nd Chief Executive. Two days earlier, in response to a Motion by Democrat Martin Lee, legislators had discussed what they hoped for from his term of office. This week the Court of Final Appeal has been examining whether salary cuts imposed on civil servants since 2003 are constitutional. If the decision goes against the government, it could have to give out a hefty amount of backpay. Further inflaming controversy, the administration has commissioned a firm to do a pay review of the civil service, a firm that has already said some civil servants are overpaid by more than 200%. For some Hong Kong children and their parents education is a rat-race, in which it pays to get off to the best start possible, even at three or four. This week Legco's education sector representative, Cheung Man-kwong, was urging the government to upgrade the training of kindergarten teachers. At the other end of the age spectrum, last month the DAB Party conducted a survey of elderly patients at government clinics in Shamshuipo. It revealed that many faced extremely long waiting times for treatment. As we discovered this week, the problem goes far beyond that one district.

The Pulse
Publish Date: 
Friday, June 24, 2005
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