Tung recovering, undergoing checkups after surgery

Former chief executive Tung Chee-hwa is in hospital for post-surgical checks, his spokesman said yesterday.

The 84-year-old Tung had surgery at Queen Mary Hospital last month and “regular follow-up checks are needed,” the spokesman said

He added that Tung’s surgery was successful and he is currently recuperating. He did not elaborate on the surgery or on the type of follow-up checks.

Sources said Tung underwent surgery for heart problems.

Leung Chun-ying, vice chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference national committee, wished Tung a quick recovery.

Pro-establishment heavyweight and National People’s Congress delegate Tam Yiu-chung said he had not caught up with Tung for some time, adding he knew Tung had been unwell recently but did not know the details of his health condition.

“He had also publicly said he was unwell and did not attend the celebrations on National Day,” Tam said. He was the only former chief executive absent from the flag-raising ceremony at Bauhinia Square on October 1.

His spokesman said then that Tung was not feeling well and was resting at home.

Tung, who is also a vice chairman of the CPPCC national committee, collapsed as he was leaving the stage for the opening ceremony of the NPC in Beijing in March this year.

It took a while before other members were able to help him back on his feet.

Tung later said people did not need to overreact to his fall as he was too focused on chatting with others and accidentally tripped.

Tung’s last public appearance was in July when he attended the movie premiere of 1921, which celebrates the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China.

Since Tung stepped down in 2005, he has taken up major roles, including the CPPCC post, and founded the Our Hong Kong Foundation think tank that aims to promote and contribute to the SAR’s long-term prosperity and stability under the one country, two systems principle.

It is speculated that Tung might become the chief convener for the 1,448-member Election Committee to take office later this month, as the role is reserved for someone at a state-leader level who will represent Beijing in solving any problems that might arise during the coming elections.

The chief convener is also responsible for running committee meetings when necessary.

But it is expected that Beijing will likely assign him and Leung as co-chief conveners due to Tung’s poor health.

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