I don’t know why they’re going through the charade of “choice” and “competition”. The Poms never did when they appointed their governors. They just appointed them. Some good (MacLehose, Wilson), some not so much (Patton). But now we’re going through a charade of election when it’s already decided by Beijing. Like John Lee.
Beijing can sometimes surprise on the upside. They appointed Zhu Rongji as mayor of Shanghai when I was there in the nineties. He was a fabulous mayor. Improved life in Shanghai enormously. I remember. If they could appoint someone like Zhu, to HK, that would be fantastic. Someone who cares more for Hong Kong than for kowtowing to Beijing, as has been Carrie Lam’s mode.
Sadly I don’t think John Lee is that man. He claims his best qualification for the job is 40 years working for the government. Well, Joe Biden had 47 years in government and look at how that’s going.
Others share my underwhelm. Letters today “Lee is often aloof and clearly lacks qualities … of charisma and pleasantness”. Exactly. And those are just the qualities you develop (or lack) if you spend your life in the bureaucracy. Hong Kong’s is very arrogant. Well paid and arrogant.