Equal Opportunities Commission


Press Releases

Press Releases

Media Statement


In response to the allegations by some Members of the Legislative Council at the meeting of the Panel on Constitutional Affairs today (14 February 2018) that the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) has committed nepotism in hiring a Chief Project Manager, the EOC has made the following statement:

The EOC is currently conducting two reviews, namely process review and governance structure/corporate governance review.

Process Review

  • In response to feedback from service users, legislative councillors, NGOs and the community, the EOC Board decided in June 2017 to conduct a process review of its complaint-handling and legal assistance functions. The review aims to assess whether the current process is the most efficient and effective in fulfilling the EOC’s statutory role and functions.
  • In launching and conducting the process review, the EOC has been following the established procedures and instructions from the Board. There is no issue of chaotic administration in the process.
  • The EOC Board decided, after thorough discussion, to set up a three-member Review Panel to steer and oversee the review. The Review Panel will be supported by an EOC staff member, who will be responsible for the administration and report-writing tasks. The EOC expects that the review report will offer concrete suggestions and recommendations on improvement measures in various aspects, including analyses of the efficiency and effectiveness of the procedures, the future work procedures of the Complaint Services Division and Legal Service Division, necessary changes to the internal operation procedures, manpower resources and budgetary requirements.

Governance Structure/ Corporate Governance Review

  • In 2015, the EOC implemented a restructuring exercise, which resulted in re-alignment of duties of different divisions, re-ranking of certain directorate staff members, and the reinstatement of the Chief Operations Officer post. While implementing the restructuring, it was decided that a review would be conducted two years later (2017) to assess the effectiveness of the new structure and if further enhancement is needed. To ensure the independence of the review, the EOC would appoint an external consultant to conduct the review.
  • Meanwhile, the EOC also decided to review its corporate governance, with a view to further enhancing its operation.

Recruitment of Chief Project Manager

  • In view of the fact that all these reviews are inter-related, the EOC considered that a Chief Project Manager should be engaged to assist in the coordination. The EOC projects that the review will be completed by mid-2018.
  • Having taken into account the work requirements of the process review, the governance structure and corporate governance review, the EOC Board considers that the candidate should possess profound policy, finance, re-structuring, human resource management and administration experience. The EOC Board also endorsed the setting up of a Recruitment Panel, which was chaired by an EOC Member, with EOC Chairperson as one of the members.
  • The EOC conducted an open recruitment exercise in end-September 2017. Advertisement was posted in the local dailies, inviting interested candidates to submit their applications for the post. The EOC Chairperson did not participate in the shortlisting stage. Upon learning that the candidates shortlisted included someone he knows, the EOC Chairperson immediately declared his interest with the Recruitment Panel. The Panel decided after discussion that the EOC Chairperson could participate in the interview with the candidates. As such, there is no question of the EOC committing nepotism or conducting a “black-box operation” in the recruitment process.
  • The appointment of a pro bono consultant is meant to enhance the credibility of the process review report. The Review Panel has invited an ex-High Court Judge to provide high-level advice on the review on an independent, pro bono basis. There is no duplication between the role of the consultant and the Chief Project Manager.
  • The EOC will continue to strive for enhancement in its service quality and effectiveness, and maintain close liaison with the Government, legislative councillors, stakeholders and members of the public, with a view to delivering its statutory duties in an even more effective and efficient manner.


Equal Opportunities Commission
14 February 2018