Hong Kong officials expressed concern on Monday after one of their own cleaners was seen in a widely circulated video throwing a bag of rubbish into the sea.
A man wearing a fluorescent vest similar to those worn by outsourced cleaners, or people hired from an outside company, for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department was captured on camera dumping an unsealed bag of rubbish at a waterfront spot. The man also kicked what appeared to be other pieces of rubbish into the sea.
Some media reports said the man threw more than one bag into the water.
A Facebook user who posted the video on Monday also wrote: “If that’s how the hygiene department handles rubbish, it’s no wonder the sea in Hong Kong is so stinky.”
Media reports said the clip was taken on Monday morning next to the marine police base on Shum Wan Road in Aberdeen. A department spokesman on Monday night said it was investigating the case.
“Such illegal acts are very serious. If sufficient evidence is gathered, we will consider prosecuting the offenders,” he said.
The spokesman said the department could also ask the contractor to replace staff members who aren’t carrying out their duties properly. He added it had been closely watching the performance of its cleaning contractors and carrying out regular and surprise inspections.
Last year the Marine Department collected 220.9 tonnes of rubbish in the waters off the city’s Southern district, a higher figure than in other areas such as Sai Kung and Tai Po.