While the opposition parties are making political capital out of Vice President and KMT presidential hopeful Lien Chan's (
Lien hopes to clear up any doubts the public might have regarding his stated intentions to put billions of KMT assets into a trust.
Following Lien's pledge on Jan. 2 to place KMT assets into a trust as part of his campaign platform, there has been a lot of speculation regarding his motives and determination.
Some observers have questioned whether the KMT would use the idea of setting up a trust merely to deflect criticism of the party's huge assets -- in essence, putting money from his left pocket into his right pocket, such as entrusting the assets to a KMT-controlled company.
Some critics have even suggested that since the relations between President Lee Teng-hui (
In responding to such criticism, Eric Chu (
Chu also urged opposition leaders to stop concocting stories about possible KMT internal strife.
"The DPP is simply sticking a pin in wherever there is room, despite the obvious fact that Lee was putting his political weight behind Lien by proposing to set up a special task force at the KMT's central standing committee last Wednesday,'' Chu said.
Lien's campaign manager Jason Hu (
"Lee encouraged Lien to create his own image, because this is a win-win strategy,'' Hu said.
Meanwhile, in the hope of accelerating the reform schedule, both DPP leaders and independent presidential candidate James Soong (宋楚瑜) yesterday recommended establishing a cross-party alliance to investigate KMT assets.
They demanded that the KMT clarify its assets and return any illicit interests that may have been taken from the public.
"Over the past several decades, the KMT has taken advantage of the party's vast properties, in which most of its assets were grabbed from the public, to hinder the construction of a fair party competition environment,'' said DPP's secretary-general Yu Shyi-kun.
For his part, Soong proposed organizing a non-partisan committee to further look into the exact value of KMT assets.
"Before the KMT puts its assets into a trust, its assets should be thoroughly examined and classified, in order to make it clear which parts belong to the public,'' Soong said.
Soong said that Lien's current campaign headquarters on Jen-ai Road in Taipei is actually on public property.
The piece of land in question was state-owned under Japanese colonial rule, but the KMT took it over after the KMT government took over Taiwan, Soong said.
Yu said the DPP would invite pro-reform groups to jointly monitor the KMT's operations when entrusting its assets to professional managers.
Meanwhile, KMT spokesman Huang Hwei-chen (
Regarding a timetable for entrusting KMT assets, Liu Tai-ying (
"The KMT wants to put its property in a trust, but without the support of relevant legislation, such as the passage of 'The Trust Enterprise Law' (
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