Hong Kong Customs adopts Chinese-style foot drill for passing-out parade (with photos/video)
The Commissioner of Customs and Excise, Mr Hermes Tang, inspected the passing-out parade, including a Chinese-style flag-raising ceremony and foot drill performance, for the 129th-132nd Customs Inspector Induction Courses and the 475th-478th Customs Officer Induction Courses held by Hong Kong Customs at the Hong Kong Customs College today (October 19).
Speaking at the passing-out parade, Mr Tang said the department has taken the lead in adopting the Chinese-style foot drill to perform the parade by all of the graduates. This has broken new ground in the passing-out parades of the Hong Kong disciplined services, which is particularly meaningful and encouraging. He also expressed his gratitude to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Hong Kong Garrison for providing training to the Customs trainees.
“The Chinese-style foot drill adopted by the disciplined services not only fully reflects our emotional attachment to the nation and deep love of our mother country, but also shows national sentiment and the proper manner of the disciplinary forces of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR).
“The Chinese-style foot drill has long been a shining icon of our country in the international community. It is also a spiritual outlook that our 1.4 billion compatriots are proud of. Good practice of the Chinese-style foot drill helps in better integrating ourselves into the country’s governance system and enriching the exercise of ‘one country, two systems’. Apart from spreading a positive message to members of the public, it also adds a vibrant colour of patriotism to the city,” he said.
Mr Tang noted that Customs has developed from a 25-man Preventive Service to an elite force of almost 8 000 officers, which now carries heavy and diversified duties in its enforcement of nearly 60 pieces of legislation. To enable a good understanding of the department’s roles and responsibilities in safeguarding national security after the National Security Law came into effect, National Security Law has become a part of the induction courses for the Probationary Customs Inspectors and Probationary Customs Officers. The education firms up the officers’ sense of mission and responsibility as a member of disciplined services in their safeguarding of the sovereignty, security and development interests of the nation.
Talking about the challenges of all types that Hong Kong encountered in the past two years, Mr Tang said it is most fortunate for the city to have had the Central Government’s timely combined move in implementing the National Security Law as a first step followed by improving the city’s electoral system with the full implementation of the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong”.
“The Central Government’s institutions, comprising the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR, the Office for Safeguarding National Security of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR, the Commissioner’s Office of China’s Foreign Ministry in the HKSAR and the Hong Kong Garrison, have all along been doing their utmost to assist Hong Kong in overcoming all sorts of difficulties and challenges. With hope having emerged again, fully reflecting that our country always stands ready as the strongest, most solid and most unwavering backup for Hong Kong.
“It is an honour and yet a grave responsibility to be a member of the Committee for Safeguarding National Security of the HKSAR. I have a particular deep feeling in holding the capacity and must express my sincerest gratitude to the Central Government,” he said.
Mr Tang pledged to proceed along the smart customs blueprint to facilitate the development strategies of the Belt and Road Initiative, the Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and the 14th Five-Year Plan. He said that with more clearance-friendly measures for the cross-boundary passenger and cargo flows, the city would be better integrated into the national development, under which Hong Kong, with its competitive edge, can make contributions to the national development needs.
“Our primary intention must not be forgotten and we must take our mission seriously. We must be unwavering in keeping unity and always keep in our hearts that Hong Kong Customs is a steadfast and fearless team. We must live up the expectations by our country and society, and team up with other disciplinary forces to deliver our services in a loyal manner,” the Commissioner said as he encouraged all graduates at the end of his speech.
Sixty-four Probationary Customs Inspectors and 72 Probationary Customs Officers graduated today.