Control Yuan member Huang Huang-hsiung (黃煌雄) yesterday publicized the findings of his investigation into the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) party assets that spanned 14 years and six months, calling the KMT assets “the Ring” — alluding to an object with strong, alluring powers that is hard to give up, from The Lord of the Rings.
A two-term Control Yuan member who has not been nominated to serve another term, Huang told a press conference in Taipei that he wanted to finalize the case before leaving the post as he does “not expect that there will be another member who will continue the task.”
“The KMT’s party assets are the product of an authoritarian party-state and have to be terminated for the soundness and consolidation of Taiwan’s party politics and, thereby, its democracy,” he said. “Of all the democratic countries in the world, there is no other democracy that has been troubled by a party’s assets for more than 20 years.”
He and other members who worked on the case have summarized the party’s assets into three types that they believe are of questionable origin: 114 houses and their bases that were taken over from the Japanese colonial government, 19 theaters turned over to the party for its management by the provincial special administration that was in operation from 1945 to 1947, and at least 79 public properties and 34 buildings given by local governments to the party as gifts.
More than 14 years of investigations have witnessed the party announcing its willingness to return the properties whose origins have been in doubt and actually returning some of them, Huang said.
“But the process is not complete,” he added, saying that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) — who claimed in 2005 in his capacity as party chairman that the KMT would have the party-asset issue settled by 2008 — “is guilty of dereliction of duty.”
Huang said that Ma, compared with his predecessors, is probably the KMT party chairman that has exhibited the most positive attitude toward returning party assets and was once the most resolute, “but it is now 2014 and his promise has not yet been made good.”
The legislation process for regulations on political parties’ assets procured through illegitimate means has also been encountering setbacks, according to Huang.
The draft act proposed by the Executive Yuan when the Democratic Progressive Party was in power was three times sent to the Legislative Yuan, where the KMT was the majority as it is now, but every time failed to be scheduled by the Procedure Committee to be referred to the related standing committee for deliberation.
After the KMT returned to power, there have been only two meetings at the legislature’s joint committee session, in 2012, to discuss related regulations, and no result has been achieved, Huang said.
“Only when ‘the Ring’ disappears from Taiwan’s political scene can the political playing field be leveled and the spirit of social justice be materialized,” he said.