The Hong Kong Cabin Crew Federation has said that it will hold a sit-in on April 12 if the Civil Aviation Department Director-General does not clarify his controversial statements regarding security checks, made in a Legislative Council Special Finance Committee meeting on Friday.

“This has happened in the past, and will happen in the future,” Director-General Norman Lo Shung-man said, in response to Civic Party lawmaker Alvin Yeung Ngok-kiu who asked whether passengers and luggage need to go through security checks together.

Civil Aviation Department Director-General Norman Lo Shung-man. Photo: Legislative Council Webcast screenshot.

The controversy stems from the incident in which the Chief Executive allegedly used his privileges to help his daughter bypass security rules to retrieve forgotten hand carry luggage at the Hong Kong International Airport. The Chief Executive and his family, as well as the Airport Authority, denied that rules or procedures were bypassed in the incident, but pro-democracy lawmaker Emily Lau called for an investigation.

The federation said that it severely condemns the Director-General’s statement. “[We] demand that the director-general clearly explain whether his statements are evidence that all security checks before boarding are only in name, ignoring ICAO [International Civil Aviation Organisation] demands that all passengers’ hand carry luggage must go through security checks at the same time and be brought to the aircraft by passengers themselves after passing security.” said the federation in a statement released on Saturday.

Hong Kong Cabin Crew Federation statement. Photo: Stand News.

The federation added that the Hong Kong International Airport’s management has been criticised over the last few years for wasting tax-payer’s money and causing Hong Kong’s airport to drop in rankings.

“[The director-general] has made such statements that neglect airport security. The federation definitely has suspicions about his ability to lead and his understanding about civil aviation security,” it said.

Chantal Yuen

Chantal Yuen is a Hong Kong journalist interested in issues dealing with religion and immigration. She majored in German and minored in Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University.