Wed, Oct 16, 2013 - Page 8 News List

Political storm needs public solution

By Shih Ming-teh 施明德

The other day Jiang was at pains to say that he had made no unseemly comments about the legislative speaker, and had meant no disrespect to the legislature. Nevertheless, on the past four or five occasions that he has entered the legislative debating chamber, he has not made eye contact with Wang, and has certainly not greeted him or exchanged civilities with him. This is quite at odds with the conventional etiquette of such occasions, when the head of the executive branch has entered the legislature, it is tradition to greet the head of the legislature. Again, it was his manner that let him down, and which betrayed far more derision for the legislative branch than bad-mouthing the speaker could have. It is of little consequence whether Jiang himself comes or goes, but the public has a right to know whether members of the Ma administration, either in its current manifestation or in later ones, respects the legislature, or whether it just views the Legislative Yuan as the place that churns out the laws it needs.

Now, what about the prosecutor-general?

The events of the last month substantially reveal the fact that Prosecutor-General Huang Shih-ming (黃世銘) has essentially been serving as the president’s hatchet man.

Huang as prosecutor-general answers not to the president, but to far higher ideals: He answers to the law, to Heaven, to God, even. However, not to the president. He was nominated by the president, and given his position by the president, his nomination having been ratified by the legislature. However, all of this was just procedure, and in no way gives cause for the president to expect the prosecutor-general to report to him about individual cases. If it were other officials nominated by the president would also have to report directly to him. The very idea is preposterous.

Two days after allegations were made, Jiang forced then-minister of justice, Tseng Yung-fu (曾勇夫), from office. Why is it that Huang, who was implicated in the abuse of his powers and accused of breaking the law, remains in his post? With Ma and Wang finding it impossible to reconcile their differences, everything is being done in private.

Finally, was the Central

Election Commission (CEC) acting properly?

It is of paramount importance that the CEC remains impartial. However, in this last month we have seen CEC Chairwoman Chang Po-ya (張博雅) side with Ma in his campaign to oust Wang. Article 6 of the Organic Law of the Central Election Commission (中央選舉委員會組織法) lists the matters which are to be approved by the full committee. No. 4 on that list cites “processes of major dispute case(s) processing.” Chang proceeded without regard for due process according to the organic act pertaining to her own organization.

Within one or two hours she had issued a document to the legislature, revoking Wang’s qualifications as legislative speaker, and thereby making the storm worse and further endangering social stability. How are we to understand Chang’s part in all this?

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