Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Friday that the media should not have reported her comments at a private meeting in 2019 when she admitted that pushing ahead with her extradition bill caused havoc in society.
Lam said new legislation could be needed to outlaw such leaks in future.
In a recording of Lam speaking in August 2019, which was made public by the Reuters news agency, she was heard saying that she had caused "unforgivable havoc" by continuing with plans to change Hong Kong's extradition laws, despite public opposition, and sparking the massive protests that year.
But appearing on RTHK’s Backchat programme on Friday, the CE said she had not made the wrong decision.
"The only thing I confess in taking forward the fugitives offenders ordinance is the PR side, that we have not been able to disseminate and articulate the purpose and objectives of this piece of legislation," the Hong Kong leader said.
"Up to this date, I would not regard that as a wrong decision to press ahead with the [extradition law] amendment."
"Unforgivable, but you forgave yourself," one of the show's presenters, Hugh Chiverton, said to Lam, who did not respond directly.
The CE also said that the media should not have reported what she had told people in a private meeting.
"That showed the integrity and the morality of some of the media," she said, adding "the media should not have reported something that was given in that fashion."
When Chiverton pointed out that the Reuters audio leak didn't break any laws, Lam said perhaps it is time then to bring in new legislation.
"Or you get new friends," he said to the CE.