Lawmaker Regina Ip said sitting Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying told her to “take care” of herself, as pressure would be high during the race for the city’s top job and there may be “sudden incidents” in the next few months.

Ip resigned from the Executive Council (Exco) on Thursday morning to join the race. Leung accepted it and Ip, a former security secretary, said it was an honour to be received by Leung personally.

“I thank him for appointing me to the Exco four years ago allowing me to participate in the governance of Hong Kong once again. I also thanked him for the hard work in the past four years, making great contributions to Hong Kong,” she said. “Leung also expressed his gratitude for my work performance as a member of Exco and the Legislative Council, and the support for the government.”

Leung Chun-ying Regina Ip
Leung Chun-ying and Regina Ip. Photo: Facebook/Regina Ip.

“We also shared experience for elections. He reminded me to take care of my health, because the pressure is high for the chief executive race next few months, and there may be sudden incidents anytime, so I have to take care of my health. I am very grateful for his encouragement, I wished him good luck in work and life in the future.”

After announcing Wednesday that she has received support from her party, Ip said two pro-democracy lawmakers Claudia Mo and Leung Yiu-chung told her to “fight on.” She added that she was grateful for the “spiritual support” from the pair who have been her colleagues for eight years.

But both Mo and Leung said they only said that to be polite, it was a manner of speech, and they would not support Ip.

Regina Ip
New People’s Party agreed on Regina Ip’s run. Photo: Facebook/Regina Ip.

Ip is to appear at an event at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on Thursday afternoon to officially announce her bid and her election platform.

It will be attended by former chief secretary David Akers-Jones, businessman Allan Zeman, former lawmaker Peggy Lam Pei Yu-dja and former party colleague Dr Louis Shih Tai-cho.

Michael Tien Puk-sun and Eunice Yung Hoi-yan, lawmakers of Ip’s New People’s Party, will also be present.

However, figures from major political parties have distanced themselves from the event. Former Legislative Council president Jasper Tsang Yok-sing initially agreed to attend, but ultimately chose not to.

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.