A top police officer is set to become the new Ombudsman from April 1, after the term of the current Ombudsman ends.

Winnie Chiu Wai-yin, 56, has worked in the police for 35 years and was the first female deputy police commissioner. Chiu will be the first Ombudsman coming from a police background.

The Office of The Ombudsman was established in 1989 to enhance government services by investigating complaints and through self-initiated studies.

Winnie Chiu. Photo: GovHK.

A government press release issued on Friday said Chiu had a remarkable career with professionalism and competence.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam, who made the appointment, said: “I am confident that Ms Chiu would fully demonstrate her independence and impartiality as the Ombudsman. Her extensive experience and clear vision would enable the Office of The Ombudsman to further its important mission of improving public administration in Hong Kong.”

The new Ombudsman was chosen by a selection board chaired by Executive Councillor Chow Chung-kong, with members including Executive Councillor Fanny Law, former Jockey Club chair Simon Ip and the director of the government’s Administration Wing.

Incumbent Ombudsman Connie Lau. File Photo: GovHK.

Lam thanked outgoing Ombudsman Connie Lau and wished her all the best in her future endeavours.

“Under Ms Lau’s capable and outstanding leadership, the Office of The Ombudsman has proactively investigated systemic issues and offered constructive recommendations, thereby motivating government departments and public bodies to enhance the efficiency and quality of public services. Her sense of justice and fairness is well respected, and the sterling performance of her office has won recognition both in the local community and internationally,” Lam said.

Oscar Kwok. Photo: Police.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong Police Force announced that its Senior Assistant Commissioner Oscar Kwok will replace Winnie Chiu as deputy police commissioner (management), on March 4.

Kwok, 53, joined the police as an Inspector in 1990. He was promoted to senior assistant commissioner in 2017.

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Kris Cheng

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.