Vice President Vincent Siew’s (蕭萬長) sister yesterday threatened to take legal action against Next Magazine, which alleged she was connected to a case in which military personnel allegedly leaked classified information to China.
Siew Ya-wen (蕭雅文) said in a statement that she had not engaged in any illegal dealings and she was “shocked” when she learned of the report. She said she would sue the magazine to protect her reputation and personal rights.
Siew Ya-wen said she had met Military Intelligence Bureau Colonel Lo Chi-cheng (羅奇正) at several social functions, but did not know him well. She said she was a retired elementary school teacher who likes charity work and social activities. However, she said she knew nothing about what Lo did or said.
According to the latest edition of the magazine, published yesterday, Lo told prosecutors during an investigation into alleged leaks that he knew Siew Ya-wen well. The report claimed that Siew Ya-wen expressed concern to reporters over the internal affairs of the bureau.
Commenting on the article, Presidential Office spokesman Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強) said the vice president was “surprised” and believed his sister had nothing to do with Lo Chi-cheng’s case.
However, Lo Chih-chiang said Siew would advise his relatives to pay attention to their behavior and avoid situations that could spark controversy.
Lo Chih-chiang added that the vice president had been scrupulous in separating public from private interests, saying he never discusses public affairs at home nor have his family members ever interfered in his work.
Ministry of National Defense spokesman Major General Yu Sy-tue (虞思祖) also dismissed the report as having no basis in fact. Although Lo Chi-cheng and Siew Ya-wen knew each other, they did not have any work-related contact, Yu said, adding that his ministry was also considering taking legal action against the magazine.
Lo Chih-chiang also tried to play down comments reportedly made by Evergreen Group (長榮集團) chairman Chang Yung-fa (張榮發) that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) lacked a global perspective and made no effort to support the development of heavy particle radiotherapy.
Lo Chih-chiang said the president attached great importance to Chang’s opinions and that Ma had already instructed related government agencies to conduct a thorough assessment of heavy particle radiotherapy based on their professionalism and in accordance with legal procedures.
Lo Chih-chiang said the executive branch should not play the role of a manager in this matter, but could serve as a promoter of any technology that is conducive to the nation’s
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY CNAmedical development or the public’s health.