TONG TIM NUI AND OTHERS v. HONG KONG HOUSING AUTHORITY

CACV000319A/1998

CACV 281, 282, 283, 287, 288, 289,
290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 295, 315,
316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322,
323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329,
330, 331, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344
and 345/1998
CACV 27 and 28/1999
(Consolidated)

IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

COURT OF APPEAL

CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 281, 282, 283, 287, 288, 289, 290,
291, 292, 293, 294, 295, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320,
321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331,
340, 341, 342, 343, 344 and 345 OF 1998
CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 27 and 28 OF 1999

(Consolidated)

(ON APPEAL FROM HCMP 114 OF 1998)

IN THE MATTER of the property known as Tiu Keng Leng Cottage at Site No. 25, Section No. 7 and Tiu Keng LengCottage at Site No. 131, Section No. 11, Tiu Keng Leng Cottage Area, Hong Kong

and

IN THE MATTER of compensation payable to residents of Tiu Keng Leng under the decision of Sears, J. in High Court Miscellaneous ProceedingsNo. 114 of 1998

BETWEEN
TONG TIM NUI and others Applicants
(Appellants)
AND
HONG KONG HOUSING AUTHORITY Respondent
(Respondent)

Coram : Godfrey, Mayo & Rogers, JJ.A.

Date of Hearing : 27 September 1999

Date of Judgment on costs : 27 September 1999

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JUDGMENT ON COSTS

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Godfrey, J.A. :

1. Miss Gladys Li, S.C., for the Hong Kong Housing Authority, has applied for an order for costs against the appellants, reminding us,correctly, that, as a general rule, costs follow the event and that, here, the event is that the appellants have failed and the HongKong Housing Authority has succeeded.

2. But, in our opinion, the extraordinary nature of this highly unusual case dictates a different conclusion. It seems to us that theacquiescence of the Hong Kong Housing Authority in the course taken by the judge below at various stages of the proceedings beforehim, and the failure of the Hong Kong Housing Authority to appeal against his original judgment, might fairly be considered to haveencouraged the present appeals. The success of the Hong Kong Housing Authority is solely due to the view this court took of the judge’soriginal judgment. Its success has been achieved despite, and not because, of its own arguments. The course the Hong Kong HousingAuthority has adopted in relation to these appeals has not recommended itself to this court. In these quite exceptional circumstances,we consider it proper to make no order as to the Hong Kong Housing Authority’s costs of these appeals.

( Gerald Godfrey ) ( Simon Mayo ) ( Anthony Rogers )
Justice of Appeal Justice of Appeal Justice of Appeal

Representation:

Mr. Ben Beaumont & Mr. Sher Hon Piu (M/s. Fred Kan & Co.) for the Applicants (Appellants) in all appeals except CACV 282/98

Applicant (Appellant) in CACV 282/98, Mr. Billy Yeung Bee Lee in person

Miss Gladys Li, S.C. & Mr. Peter Ng (M/s. Simmons & Simmons) for the Respondent (Respondent) in all appeals