The health department Tuesday said nine water samples taken from various places in the buildings, including the chief executive's office, tested positive for Legionella, which causes Legionnaires' disease, a severe form of pneumonia.
The checks at the HK$5.5 billion ($708 million) brand new harbourfront complex, which opened in August last year, were prompted after Education Minister Michael Suen came down with the potentially fatal illness.
Suen was in hospital for nearly two weeks and was discharged last week, but the level of Legionella bacteria found in a tap inside his office washroom was about 14 times more than what is considered safe.
Health authorities said checks also found the bacteria in other parts of the building, including the washrooms of several other ministers, the canteen and a bakery, and ordered a massive disinfection operation.
"This is more than embarrassing. It's really a shame," said Cyd Ho, a pro-democracy legislator.
Ho blamed the government and Chief Executive Donald Tsang, whose term expires in June, for rushing to open the new building which she said had compromised the cleaning and sanitisation work.
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