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Reaching out to the public

Thank heavens there was no rain when I visited Tin Shui Wai last Friday - just a lovely breeze.

Standing on the stage set on the podium, I came face-to-face with an audience of more than 800 people and spoke about the reorganisation and policy implementation of the next government. The residents of Tin Shui Wai are no strangers to me because I have been there many times. Four or five years ago, I went there with helpers from ten professional bodies to arrange urban placements for local students. More recently, during the election campaign, I also made visits to Tin Shui Wai to speak with residents. That day, just like last Friday, not a seat was empty and even open spaces and passageways far beyond the stage were packed.

Photo Photo

People were eager to ask questions and express their views, which enabled me to better understand their thoughts and concerns. When I gave them my answers, they listened attentively and quietly. In this conducive atmosphere it was clear to me that every one of them holds Hong Kong dear to their heart.

On each district visit, I feel the gentleness and friendliness of the people. Never have I worried about security and public order. To narrow the distance between the Central Government Offices and people in the local districts, I like to meet them in person and listen to their views, explain my policies and exchange ideas. This face-to-face contact is the best way to narrow the psychological distance between us. It makes our policies better understood and easier to implement.

I hope that I have already demonstrated the importance of district visits to my governing team. They form a crucial part of the accountability system, and I will continue to pay visits and expect team players to follow my example after we assume office on July 1. We stand accountable to the general public, and we should narrow the distance between the Government and the people, spatially, psychologically and politically.

May 16, 2012