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  • Peter Kam Fai Cheung SBS

Everybody Is Happy!


FADE IN:

INT. CLUBHOUSE - DAY

PETER reads newspapers small prints.

PETER (V.O.)

Five hours of reflections

among Principal Officials

and clueless regarding

the way ahead?

Peter shakes his head sideways.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd) Former secretaries spoke

out and jointly submitted their wisdom?

Peter sees the photo inserts.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Looks like business as

usual, but no ExCo meeting

again? But Government

still functions even though

those at the highest level

aren 't seen doing anything.

FLASHBACK

INT. STUDY - DAY

Focusing on keying his computer, Peter suddenly looks up.

PETER (V.O.)

Should I volunteer my

creative strategy as to

how to salvage the

operation?

Pausing.

PETER(V.O.) (Cont'd)

Why should I? She has her Principal Officials and

the ExCo to advise her.

I'm just an ordinary old

man.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

When I was Deputy

Secretary for Constitutional

Affairs (Special Duties) in

1999, she attended one

of my meetings regarding

the deconstruction of the

Urban Council and the

Regional Council.

END FLASHBACK

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

My role then was to flatten

the public administration

system.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Since 1999, I've begun

learning leadership after

Harvard professors. The

Government ferried them

to Hong Kong to train

promising civil servants.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

The Harvard professors would mention in passing

the hectic schedule of their

annual visit to Hong Kong,

as they've to meet those

responsible and accountable

within the Government

machinery as well.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

The Harvard professors

focus the knowledge transfer

on the Ministerial System.

Civil servants like me are

answerable and responsible

for our mission while the

ministers would be

accountable for credits

or discredits.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

In 2002, the Principal Officials

Accountability System was

introduced. The Principal

Officials were appointed as

Secretaries. The highest

ranking civil servants became

Permanent Secretaries under

them.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

In 2008, the Accountability

System was replaced by

the Political Appointments

System, inserting two more

layers below the Secretaries.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Are such 3-tier hierarchy

functionally necessary?

The current facts speak

themselves. Further, the

cream of the crop were/

are former civil servants.

Can they really change

their mindset? Only civil servants don't have to

to resign. Here, the political

appointees won't even

master their own fate

graciously, not to mention

leadership. How can they

persuade the populace?

FLASHBACK

INT. OFFICE - DAY (2003)

SARS' time. Hongkongers including Peter wear masks. Peter looks unhappy.

PETER (V.O.)

Both the Government and

society aren't functioning

well. I feel ashamed to

receive my salary.

END FLASHBACK

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Wouldn't now be high

time the highest authority

deconstructed the Political

Appointees System

including the embedded

the Principal Officials

Accountability System by

abolishing them and let

Permanent Secretaries

to be collectively responsible

under the Chief Executive

(CE) who would delegate

as far as the Basic Law

would permit?

DAYDREAM SEQUENCE

A/ In August 2019, Peter gets the mandate from the highest authority to deconstruct the Political Appointee System.

B/ In Sept 2019, Peter works day and night to draft the Drafting Instructions for a Bill to that effect.

C/ In Oct 2019, Peter appears before ExCo, explaining the object and purpose of the Bill and responding to some queries.

D/ In Nov 2019, as ExCo is content with the draft Bill, the Bill is tabled before LegCo.

E/ Having gone through the Bills Committee stage, the Bill is read the third time and becomes law in Dec 2019.

F/ On Jan 1, 2020, Hong Kong reverts back to the governance model at its inception.

G/ In Jan 2020, a Hong Kong "philosopher-king" is appointed as CE.

H/ In June 2020, as soon as there is a minor demonstration in Hong Kong, the "philosopher-king" offers his resignation.

I/ In July 2020, a Hong Kong "philosopher-queen" is appointed as CE.

J/ In June 2021, as soon as there is a minor demonstration in Hong Kong, the "philosopher-queen" resigns.

K/ In July 2021, in a CE appointment lucky draw, an eligible voter-candidate becomes the 1st "lucky" CE, and everybody is happy!

END DAYDREAM SEQUENCE

Peter smiles and then laughs.

FADE OUT.

The End

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