Tue, Feb 13, 2007 - Page 1 News List

Ma starts 2008 bid after indictment

`MR. CLEAN' GETS DIRTYMa Ying-jeou was indicted on corruption charges and resigned as KMT chairman. But he had a surprise for those who thought his career was over

By Rich Chang and Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTERS

comments about the developments.

Wang was scheduled to meet with the press at 4pm, but he didn't show up in

the legislature until 6:30pm, after Ma had concluded his press conference.

Wang refused to comment on whether he had waited to see what Ma would say before meeting with the press.

“I believe in Ma's integrity and morality, but I also believe in the judiciary,” Wang said, responding to the indictment.

Asked about Ma's declaration that he would seek the presidency next year,

Wang simply said “I give my greatest respects for his decision.”

The legislative speaker turned around and walked out of room when the press

asked him when he plans to declare his candidacy.

The investigation into Ma's alleged misuse of his allowance began when DPP

Legislator Hsieh Hsin-ni (謝欣霓) filed a lawsuit with the Black Gold Investigation Center last August, accusing Ma of embezzling half of his

monthly special mayoral allowance, or NT$170,000.

Ma, who was still serving as Taipei mayor then, argued that he had used the

fund in accordance with the law, which grants more than 6,500 local

government chiefs a discretionary budget, half of which can be reimbursed

for public expenditures without providing supporting receipts.

Meanwhile, prosecutor spokesman Chang yesterday said prosecutors are also

investigating Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮), Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇

貞昌), DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun, former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), and

Judicial Yuan President Weng Yueh-sheng's (翁岳生) handling of their

discretionary funds.

The investigations would be completed in the near future, added Chang.

Additional reporting by Shih Hsiu-chuan

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