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|Chief Secretary of Hong Kong|
3 October 1978 – 19 November 1981
|Preceded by||Denys Roberts|
|Succeeded by||Philip Haddon-Cave|
|1st Commissioner of the Independent Commission Against Corruption|
15 February 1974 – 3 July 1978
|Succeeded by||Donald Luddington|
|Born||21 February 1922|
London, United Kingdom
|Died||14 April 2006 (aged 84)|
|Branch/service||Royal Air Force|
Sir Jack Cater, KBE, JP (Chinese: 姬達爵士; 21 February 1922 – 14 April 2006) was the Chief Secretary of Hong Kong from 1978 to 1981. Cater was the third Chief Secretary under the Governorship of Sir Murray MacLehose, later Lord MacLehose of Beoch. He was the founding Commissioner of the Independent Commission Against Corruption of Hong Kong.
Cater served in Royal Air Force fighter squadrons during the World War II. Cater arrived in Hong Kong to work with the British military jurisdiction after the Japanese surrender. Cater began his career of civil service in 1946 as a cadet officer in the Fisheries Department, and was made Director of Agriculture and Fisheries in 1964. In 1966 Cater attended the Imperial Defence College in London. He was appointed by then Governor David Trench to lead the team that restored peace and security following the riots in 1967. He became Defence Secretary and Special Assistant to Governor David Trench during the civil unrest in 1967, and subsequently served as deputy Colonial Secretariat (1967-68), Executive Director of the newly established Trade Development Council (1968-70), Director of Commerce and Industry (1970-72), Secretary for Information (1972-73) and the Secretary for Home Affairs in 1973.
Cater was instrumental in establishing schools in all of Hong Kong's fishing villages.
In February 1974, he was delighted to accept appointment to the first Commissionership of the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) by Murray MacLehose following the flight of Police Superintendent Peter Godber, who was under investigation at the time regarding several million pounds stashed in Vancouver banks. His widow later revealed that Cater considered at one point leaving the government. She said:
People did not want to believe there was such rampant corruption in Hong Kong. He had tried very hard to persuade people that we had to do something about it, but nobody was prepared to listen.
Cater was widely respected and much liked in Hong Kong for the way in which he brought the fledgling ICAC to the point where it became strong enough to survive the attacks of vested interests, and of its many enemies both within and without the government. As a result of Cater's vital early direction, the ICAC was able to grow into a body which presided over the (almost total) eradication of corruption, both official (Governmental) and elsewhere, in Hong Kong.
From 1981 to 1984, Cater became Hong Kong's Commissioner in London. Afterwards, he joined China Light & Power Co., and became the head of Hong Kong Nuclear Investment Co, a nuclear power station venture at Daya Bay in Guangdong province. He was also a consultant to Bechtel, a US engineering contractor, and Philips.
Sir Jack was born on 21 February 1922, son of a London policeman.
Sir Jack was married to Peggy in 1950. The couple lived most of their life together in Hong Kong, until the late 1990s. They had three children, Susan, Jacqueline, and Richard.
Sir Jack and Lady Cater returned to Britain, and settled on Guernsey in the Channel Islands in 2001. Cater suffered from Alzheimer's disease during the final few years of his life. He died in Guernsey on 14 April 2006, aged 84.
A memorial was held for him in Hong Kong at the St. John's Cathedral on 21 October 2006, attended by many senior officials and prominent figures, inter alia Hong Kong Chief Executive Donald Tsang, Run Run Shaw, David Akers-Jones, former Secretary for Security Alistair Asprey, as well as Raymond Wong and Lily Yam, respectively the then current Commissioner and a former Commissioner of the ICAC.
- "Sir Jack Cater". The Telegraph. 20 April 2006. Archived from the original on 19 January 2018. Retrieved 19 January 2018.
- "Appreciation by CE at memorial service for Sir Jack Cater". The Government of Hong Kong SAR:News Archives. HK SAR Government. Retrieved 10 March 2018.
- "Sir Jack Cater". The Telegraph. 20 April 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
- Lee, Klaudia (22 October 2006), "Cater was ready to quit over graft, says widow.", South China Morning Post
- "Honorary Graduates 1989 to present". bath.ac.uk. University of Bath. Retrieved 18 February 2012.
- Tsang, Donald (21 October 2006). Appreciation by CE (Speech). Memorial service for Sir Jack Cater. St John's Cathedral, Hong Kong. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
- South China Morning Post, 22 October 2006 "In memory of HK's 'knight in shining armour' " (Page 3)