The government says the HK$8 billion set aside in the budget for "safeguarding national security" will not be going to the office set up for this purpose, but it can't disclose any details about what the money will be spent on.
According to Financial Secretary Paul Chan's latest blueprint, the massive sum will go to a “special fund” for national security purposes.
Following media requests for more information, the government issued a statement on Thursday noting that the national security law states that the SAR government should provide funding to meet the expenditure for "safeguarding national security" and approve the establishment of any relevant posts.
It said the financial secretary would submit an annual report to Legco on the control and management of the fund.
It then added that the HK$8 billion "has nothing to do with the expenditure" of the Office for Safeguarding National Security, because this is funded by Beijing.
As to what exactly the money will be spent on, the government said it is not allowed to say.
"According to Article 14 of the National Security Law, no institution, organisation or individual in the HKSAR shall interfere with the work of the Committee for Safeguarding National Security of the HKSAR. Information relating to the work of the Committee shall not be subject to disclosure," the statement said.
"Therefore, except for the above, we have no further information to provide in relation to the relevant provision."
Details of HK$8bn security fund are a secret: govt
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